What happened with HustleGPT

HustleGPT was a viral sensation that asked if bots could become entrepreneurs.

HustleGPT — no relation — seems to be a modern-day Icarus tale of a viral sensation, backlash, and internet drama.

What happened with HustleGPT

On March 15, designer and self-described “AI soothsayer” Jackson Greathouse Fall announced an experiment. He’d told GPT-4, the follow-up to ChatGPT, that it was now HustleGPT, an “entrepreneurial AI.”

HustleGPT was asked to turn $100 into a profitable business — nothing illegal, no manual labor. Fall promised to update daily for 30 days.

On Day One…

… HustleGPT suggested an affiliate marketing site for sustainable products. Per Fall’s request, his AI business partner also:

  • Provided prompts for a DALL-E-2-generated logo
  • Designed a website
  • Created a blog post featuring real products and a Midjourney image
  • Instructed Fall to spend $40 on digital ads, in addition to the $8.16 spent on the site’s domain and $29 for hosting


… it suggested hiring a content writer who’d use ChatGPT to generate posts, and developing a SaaS product “targeting a niche market with a recurring subscription model.”

After four days, Fall claimed investors had plopped down ~$7.8k in investments, per Mashable — something that probably wouldn’t have happened without the Twitter hype.

By March 22, Fall said the site had made $130 in revenue.

The fall of Fall

Fall shot to viral fame, but real life got in the way. Updates slowed, and on April 12, he tweeted that HustleGPT would take a back seat to his other work and encouraged fans to join a Discord server for updates.

  • Many followers got angry and accused him of grifting.
  • The website remains unfinished, with just that first blog post and “lorem ipsum” placeholders.

The beef

Dave Craige, a consultant, claimed he’d approached Fall about a HustleGPT Discord — from which he soon banned Fall for allegedly trying to disrupt the community and trying to undermine Craige’s reputation.

Now, there are two Discords: Craige’s “official” HustleGPT with ~5.2k members, and Fall’s Makeshift with ~3.5k, all hoping to produce the next hit AI-led startup.

What we’ve learned here:

  • People are excited about AI
  • But AI ideas often require human execution
  • Going viral seems terrible, actually
  • Even the bots cannot save humans from their drama

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