14 most important things to know about Web 2.0Christopher Koch at CIO has written perhaps the best web 2.0 critique I have read so far. His article, titled “Web 2.0: A Community in Denial” is a must read in a year that has started with news about failing Web 2.0 startups coming in at a fast clip.
I have summarized key points from his article and ensuing comments:
(the emphasis, italics, numbering, para heads are all that I contributed here. :-) )
Why would I want to join something I don't even understand?
The 90s bubble
2. (B2B) exchanges couldn't magically erase years of mistrust and enmity between suppliers and manufacturers simply by building a sandbox for them.
Note: Asking whether Web 2.0= B2B, Nicholas Carr is not sure that the social networks' success depends on creating community value.
Further, Nick says that "social network" is ...
a bullshit term made up by eggheads outside the networks who want to see in them more than is actually there. As Fred Stutzman once pointed out, only a tiny, tiny portion of the members of social networks actually do any "social networking.
Virtual learning in 3D worlds
3. "Virtual environments (for example, World of Warcraft) are safe platforms for trial and error. The chance of failure is high, but the cost is low and the lessons learned are immediate."
(Quoting John Seely Brown)
Where is the value?
4. What's the perceived value of sites like Second Life, MySpace and YouTube? MySpace calls itself "a place for friends." Whose friends? My friends? Your friends? Why would I go on here to look for my friends when I can call them or e-mail them anytime I want in relative privacy and safety?
5. There is no community in Web 2.0, unless it eventually becomes so realistic that we can experience the satisfactions and fears of looking others in their (real) eyes and interacting with them as we would in our homes, offices and communities.
6. The real value of social networking comes to us in the form of shared knowledge, no matter how near or far someone is.
7. Why do we have a gold rush mentality every time there are more than a handful of startup businesses on the Internet that do roughly the same thing?
8. It's like the old message boards--you're drawn there because you need a problem solved and perhaps you'll find someone you enjoy conversing with, or not. Why are we suddenly seeing this as something bigger than it really is?
9. Right now (Second Life) is like the Sims with a discussion board (which already exists).
10. Evidence says people know value when they see it, regardless of the medium through which it is presented.
11. You do have a real community--it's called a business.
12. And if your boss asks you to build avatars for the executive staff, you probably need to look for a new job.
13. Our (Generation Mom & Dad) social networks are already defined and we just don't use the Internet for it. I tried, it didn't work. But …a college senior and I had a chance to check out his facebook page over Christmas. To put it simply, it is how he lives. He uses it instead of email, it's how he finds parties and other events…
14. Let's see the really value of web 2.0 when they enter the workforce.