It’s a catchy prase, “until the end of the internet,” isn’t it? The folks at what was then 37 Signals coined it back in 2015, as “a promise to our customers: we’re dedicated to supporting our products forever.”
This matters to me because, for the past four and a half years, I’ve been a beneficiary of this policy. I use Highrise, the onetime CRM counterpart to the Basecamp project management system. I’ve been on it since my agency business development days, and I’m still on it today.
When I first got a Highrise account, I was looking for a dirt-simple relationship management program. Highrise checked all the boxes (easy to understand, inexpensive, shared a billing account and login with an app we already used in the office) and was straightforward to integrate into my processes. I didn’t need it for much, and for what I did—centralized contacts, emailed reminders, bcc-enabled conversation tracking—it did the trick.
I kept using Highrise when I switched agencies, and when I left the business development cycle, I hung onto my account, as it contained many of my contacts. I spooled up an individual plan and discovered it was great for personal CRM, too. I began keeping reminders for staying in touch with colleagues and classmates.
My trusty Highrise account proved invaluable when I had to look for work: I had a repository of everyone I knew, when we last spoke or emailed, and my plans for future outreach. It kept me organized and kept me honest. It may be the only software for which I pay a recurring fee, and I’ve never questioned its value.
So when Highrise went end of life in 2018, I was grateful for the Basecamp team’s approach to longevity. Sure enough, the app still works great, despite going into maintenance mode back when Shohei Ohtani was a rookie. I’m in the app regularly, and its reminders are in my email all the time. I have a few changes I’d like to see, but they’re not major, and after 11 years I’ve gotten very comfortable with the UI. In an industry known for its ephemeral nature, a service you can trust to stick around is a revelation.
“Until the end of the internet” sounds coy, but it means something to the people it impacts. I’m grateful for it, and for as long as Basecamp keeps its promise, they’ll have me as a customer.