The dead-end Web 2.0 trend

The dead-end Web 2.0 trend

Summary: Every web 2.0 company is offering a variant on the Swiss-army-knife-of-collaborative/social-media-technologies.

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TOPICS: Enterprise 2.0
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Every web 2.0 company is offering a variant on the Swiss-army-knife-of-collaborative/social-media-technologies. Each one offers pretty much all the same things: sharing, blogging, sharing anything, any and many types of communications, collaborative apps--and mashing together whatever services you need online. And the ones that don't,  have plans to add such features.

Yesterday, my colleague Richard Koman took a look at the Web 2.0 companies picked out by the San Francisco Chronicle. Other mainstream publications are doing similar things.

IMHO, this is a "web 2-point-uh oh" trend because it leads nowhere; this is not the Northwest passage to the next boom. This is so one-point-five ...

With so many Web 2.0 companies coming out of alpha for the Fall season, it is a good time to draw attention to how dead-end most of these ventures are, despite some pretty darn good technologies/services.

For instance, what would it take for a GOOG or a YHOO or a MSFT to reverse engineer any one of the web 2.0 companies? About a week to launch the alpha and a month to launch the beta-- plus they have the scale already built-in to monetize the heck out of them from day 14...

How many video hosting and editing sites are there? North of 200... How many similar sites are there that fall into any web 2.0 category?

Somebody will do the math but I don't need to know the exact number to know that there are way too many of them. These types of companies only succeed if they become de facto platforms for large enough communities.

Communities are not created by press release, they are not announced, they are grown. With so many community-creator-platforms out there, we will have some large communities created on some of the technology platforms--but that will be for a small fraction of the total number of ambitious web 2.0 ventures.

Ask me (not email) and I'll tell you where the real action will be, where the next boom will be :-)

Topic: Enterprise 2.0

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14 comments
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  • Taking up your offer!

    Tom wrote:
    [i]"Ask me (not email) and I'll tell you where the real action will be, where the next boom will be :-)"[/i]

    All right - where will the next boom be?
    bportlock
    • You have to ask...

      ...in person :-)
      foremski
      • I am asking in person....

        ... this is as personal as it gets round here.

        [i]Dear Tom,

        Please keep your promises and credibility intact by telling me, as you promised, what the next big thing is going to be.
        [/i]
        bportlock
      • The next big thing...

        Ahhhh! so the next big thing is what you're working on, right?
        cameronjones
  • How do you get to Web 2.0

    when you are using Javascript 1.4? Javascript is the problem - and ActiveX makes the problem worse. What we NEED for Web 2.0 is BROWSER 2.0 i.e. Throw away the JS and pick another scripting language to use (Ruby!). This is the ONLY way to get advanced features in the web . . .
    Roger Ramjet
    • It's not the web browser...

      ...it is in the fact that we have enough web 2.0 technology platforms already. How are they all going to make money?
      foremski
      • The usual way...

        ... most of them will die off and leave one or two which can be sucessfully exploited.

        Like Linux - there's hundreds of distros but most of them are niche or hobbyist. There's only about 6 or 7 mainstream ones with RedHat, SUSE and Unbuntu accounting for the vast bulk of Linux.

        In webservers more than half are ASP or PHP with JSP and a few others filling in the corners.

        Web 2.0 stuff will be no different. Once the also-rans are out of the race the correct development and application of the tools will occur.

        Just because the tools are Open Sourced doesn't mean that you can't make money from them.
        bportlock
  • Differentiation is the key

    I agree. Too many copies of the same concept going on, and a lot of them will die. That's why with Frucall (voice based comparison shopping) we took a very different approach - it's not yet another "fancy" but all-the-same service. It's a very simple but practical service, which in the back uses Web 2.0 APIs. On the front, it's just a phone call, but something that nobody else does.

    The chance of Google or Yahoo doing the same is always there, but hey if that becomes a concern then nobody should start a new business. But again, in our case, by tying things to telephony we are making it a little distant from the core business of Googles of the world. The rest is the risk that we accept.
    nasser_manesh
    • The risk is...

      ...that you do all the market research and building a concept into a real business then when the viability is set, a copycat comes along and reverse-engineers it. However, if you have strong community, then that becomes your defence.
      foremski
      • But what you can't reverse engineer...

        ....is my professional network of friends, coworkers, customers,
        colleagues and aquaintances developed over 20 years as a
        professional. Technology is great and all but a powerful
        professional network that allows you to rapidly and efficiently
        deliver your solution to the right market and then rapidly build the
        buzz momentum in that market for that solution is something
        cannot be replicated easily.
        toennis
  • The Latest Judgment

    I don't know where the next boom will be. But the 2.0-social-sharing-trend (videos or whatever) may be an advantage when we have to justify ourselves some day. See:
    http://geekandpoke.typepad.com/geekandpoke/2006/08/the_latest_judg.html

    Bye,
    Oliver
    owidder
  • Where will the next boom arise?

    Where will the action be?

    Let me make a guess: Vista and Office 2007.

    To prove my guess wrong, one would have to identify something that will produce profits over $1 billion a month.

    The web is involved, for updates and supplementary services.

    And new applications will be written and upgrades will be produced for these products that will produce $ millions more in sales.

    It'll be the biggest boom to happen to the software industry in years. And the most explosive success seen... until the next generation of these products is issued.

    I feel quietly confident I'll be proven right. ;-)
    Anton Philidor
    • Get real Anton

      Anton said:
      [i]"Where will the action be?

      Let me make a guess: Vista and Office 2007.

      To prove my guess wrong, one would have to identify something that will produce profits over $1 billion a month."[/i]


      Anton [b]meant[/b]:
      [i]"Where will the action be?

      Let me make a guess: Vista and Office 2007.

      To prove my guess wrong, one would have to identify something that will produce profits over $1 billion a month [b]for Microsoft[/b]."[/i]

      The rest of us aren't involved Anton.
      bportlock
  • The Next big thing (The Cyber World)

    Check it out at Webkiller.net and OsiXs.net
    Orders@...