The long tail is dead, long live the long tailAlthough a group of 10 or so sites may account for most of the internet’s traffic, it is the long tail that provides the spice of conversation.
Nicholas Carr writes in the Guardian that the Internet is being carved into information plantations, where top 10 big names including Google, Wikipedia, Myspace, Facebook, Yahoo and others accounted for 40% of the internet’s page views.
A couple of players dominate various segments of the internet: Google has 65% of the search market; Yahoo dominates in mail, Myspace in social networks, and so on.
This is not new. Pareto’s principle existed even before Pareto put a name to the phenomenon.
The concentration of power continues in all spheres of human activity, despite the emergence of promising ideologies and technologies throughout history.
Coming to the long tail, the incredibly cheap cost to have an online presence ensures that the marginalized, the individual will continue to have a voice, and there will be more than few ears to hear that solitary thought.
The long tail also ensures that these ‘Information Plantations’ do not turn into ‘Walled Gardens’ of yore.