Getting The Net: It's The Conversation, Stupid

from the the-message-is-getting-through dept

During the dot com bubble, lots of people (usually young) would accuse others (usually older) of "not getting" the internet - and they were often focused on why the internet could help you sell rubber chickens better over the internet. So, these days, lots of people have fun laughing about the whole concept of "getting the internet". However, there really is an internet to get, and it has nothing to do with e-commerce. The thing that people need to understand is that the real power of the internet is that it's "a never-ending worldwide conversation" and the "most participatory form of mass speech yet developed". More succinctly, the internet is about connecting people - not about talking to them. It's a conversational model, and not a broadcast model. That's the simple point that many people and companies still don't "get". As the article says, you can no longer dominate the conversation or sweep things under the rug. Information is going to get out, and figuring out a way to embrace that - even when it makes you look bad, or changes your business model - is necessary.

Reader Comments

Subscribe: RSS

View by: Time | Thread


  • identicon
    Trey Taylor, 21 Oct 2003 @ 2:34pm

    Ripoff

    Just like the Guardian to rip off the essential learnings of the Cluetrain Manifesto without mentioning the provenance of the idea. www.cluetrain.com for those who are interested in the genesis and better explication of the idea as internet as conversation marketplace.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Mike (profile), 21 Oct 2003 @ 2:40pm

      Re: Ripoff

      I don't think cluetrain really originated that idea. It seemed like it was around way before it. While I like the folks behind the Cluetrain Manifesto, I never really understood the hype surroudning it. It seemed like a bunch or really obvious statements, with little deeper analysis.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    aNonMooseCowherd, 21 Oct 2003 @ 4:31pm

    No Subject Given

    More succinctly, the internet is about connecting people - not about talking to them.

    Apparently you don't get the net either. Your view is just as limited as the view of the people you are criticizing. What made the net (originally the Arpanet and then its successor the Internet) so successful is its generality, which lets it be used for so many things. (Compare the original Arpanet design with earlier networks, which were all designed for one specific application.)

    Just because you're only interested in one aspect does't mean the net can't just as well be used for other purposes, such as distributed data collection, publishing, and even the dreaded e-commerce.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • icon
      Mike (profile), 21 Oct 2003 @ 4:45pm

      Re: No Subject Given

      Who said that the internet can't be used for "distributed data collection, publishing, and even the dreaded e-commerce." I certainly didn't. Of course it can be used for all of those things, and it's wonderful that it can be.

      The point I was trying to make wasn't that you couldn't do those things on the internet, but that those aren't what make the internet unique and special.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 22 Oct 2003 @ 8:31am

    A Few of My Favorate Things...

    ...that I love about the EnterWeb:

    1 - I love it's ability to route around "damage"-- regardless if it's diebold, self-posted compromising photos, lunie-toon pseudo-religions or whatever. Once it gets on the Internet, it's there forever... and no amount of lawyering will let you have your way.

    2 - The trick to "getting the InterWeb" is to not get it and sort of let it happen... If you're part of the process, you'll be the part that's happening. If you're a poser just trying to buy your way in, you'll spend a lot of time and money and effor to "get the internet" only to find out that you don't.

    3 - The internet was here before the bubble and it will be here long after the bubble has popped, re-inflaited, popped again and [...] well, you get the idea. It is so funny to see some other countries go through *exactly* the same process of over investment that happened in the 90s... I just hope the process doesn't cause some weaker economies to collapse when they go bust.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here



Subscribe to the Techdirt Daily newsletter




Comment Options:

  • Use markdown. Use plain text.
  • Remember name/email/url (set a cookie)

Close

Add A Reply

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here



Subscribe to the Techdirt Daily newsletter




Comment Options:

  • Use markdown. Use plain text.
  • Remember name/email/url (set a cookie)

Follow Techdirt
Techdirt Gear
Shop Now: Copying Is Not Theft
Advertisement
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Essential Reading
Techdirt Deals
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Techdirt Insider Chat
Advertisement
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Recent Stories
Advertisement
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads

Close

Email This

This feature is only available to registered users. Register or sign in to use it.