Tuesday, April 24, 2007

Web 2.0 & the age of recycling

When I wrote in January that 2007 is going to be a year of consolidation in Web 2.0, few paid attention to it.

Most of truisms about web 2.0 are already out in public domain.

However, the so-called pundits cannot help recycling those truisms into yet another ‘groundbreaking’ study on how people use the social web.

The people at Forrester have released ‘the new social technographics’ report', where they have again looked at how people…you know what.

If you look at the above graphic, do you see anything new?
To me, this looks like they have taken Jason Calacanis' observation about social networking/web 2.0, namely '80% consume, 19% comment, 1% contribute", added up known observations taken by the Pew Research and voila!, a new report is born.

1. Does it tell us that social network traffic numbers are not reliable enough to wager our lives with? No.

2. Does it tell us that more than 50% of messages on social networks are spam? No.

3. Does it tell us that social networks are new porn? No.
(For the first time, traffic numbers for social networks are more than that of porn sites. However, it is also true that sex plays a big part in the social networks)

4. Does it tell that that despite all the hype around social networks, people are still reluctant to share information? No

These are all common sense observations.

If you are on the net for a while now, you can guess the directions things are going.

However, the so-called pundits are writing for that grossly overpaid, 'too busy' (huh?) executives eager to pay big amounts for the report. (note: substitute kids instead of executives and you would know what I mean)

Free Advice for busy executives: Look at Gartner’s hype cycle report and you will know how long will it take a technology to enter the mainstream and help us do things better. Until then, it is all hype and regurgitation.

What surprises me is how eagerly gatekeepers like Techmeme lap up all this recycled material. If the gatekeepers do it for long, they are in danger of becoming irrelevant.

I do not know about you, but of late, I have not been excited by stories appearing on Techmeme. I fear it is fast becoming a place for A-listers, consultants to sell their wares, add in the occasional story from NYT.



At 4:11 PM , Anonymous Jonny Bentwood said...

This is an excellent insight into how companies should make bespoke programmes dependent upon the audience they are trying to reach.

Too often I have seen a 'one size fits all' methodology into new media outreach.
Hopefully, this kind of research will push vendors to consider that different approaches need to be taken dependent upon the micro-audience that are targetting.

My post backs this up.

At 10:24 AM , Anonymous Ty West said...

Looking at this graph with pure objectivity would be an injustice to the information it presents. I think the real usefulness of the graph comes into play when deciding what kind of participant YOU are going to be, what form of value you bring to the web, and what kinds of audiences you're going to related to.

Btw, You are one of my new favorite bloggers.

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