Kara Swisher

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Special Projects Head Shakil Khan Moves on From Path


Shakil Khan — the well-known head of special projects for the popular Spotify music service, who took the same kind of job at Path last year — is departing the personal social networking site.

He will remain a special adviser, and is also an investor in the San Francisco-based startup.

The globe-trotting Khan (pictured here), who arrived at the startup only last March, had worked with Path on a number of efforts, especially in expanding its international presence. Path recently hired Shindo Kimihiko to turbocharge the company’s efforts in the fast-growing Asian markets.

A Path spokeswoman confirmed the departure after I inquired, and the London-based Khan also emailed me this statement:

When I joined Path, the company was just 20 people, only available in a handful of languages and the resources were mainly U.S.-focused. During my time there, we launched in 17 languages, established great teams in marketing, localization, growth and international and doubled the number of staff. As more than 50 percent of Path’s usage is now international, I’d say that my original objective of helping Path to think in more international terms and capitalize on global opportunities is done :) Moving to the next stage of Path’s growth, I remain as a Special Advisor to the company, as well as continuing to spend time with my other investment companies, including Spotify, SecondMarket, Summly, Blackjet and a couple of exciting startups at incubation stage.

Path recently announced that the service — which has raised $55 million in funding — had five million users.

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Just as the atom bomb was the weapon that was supposed to render war obsolete, the Internet seems like capitalism’s ultimate feat of self-destructive genius, an economic doomsday device rendering it impossible for anyone to ever make a profit off anything again. It’s especially hopeless for those whose work is easily digitized and accessed free of charge.

— Author Tim Kreider on not getting paid for one’s work