Wednesday, November 30, 2005

Root of R/W Media Value

As a born skeptic, I have resisted the latest wave of peer-based hype surrounding blogs for some time. I've run web sites from the ground up, and through dummy services like geocities and the like. So what. People are posting stuff on the internet. It isn't that hard.

But now I get it. I get it because I've been sucked in. Once I got past using RSS to give me locally published football news (to get the real scoop), I quickly found that I was pushing traditionally published content down further on my My Y! page. Today I dumped them altogether.

The truth is that I get very little beyond basic updates on the 'news' from these sources. The value is in their timliness, not their content, and I get this from many different sources. There is never anything that gets you thinking. Never anything that makes you mad, or engages you in the discourse. It just is. And it only is once it 'has been determined' to be fact (passive voice intentional).

The hype is the problem. The Hype around this whole community, viral, peer-based, social Web 2.0 noise tuend me off, and caused me to dismiss the whole thing as a well orchestrated PR excersise (I've been there myself).

What's ironic is that I saw the whole thing as someone using the media infrastructure to some end, and that I was being presented with 'fact' that was spin. But this was just traditional media coverage. Once I engaged inside these networks, I found fluid conversations. No fact, no posturing, no false sense of authority. Egos to be sure, but it is all open for debate (whatever it is). And it is good.

The value is undeniable, but I am still struggling to work out the implications. And the entreprenuer in me is curious about the opportunities that emerge in this kind of dislocation.

So I want to get back to basics and figure out what it all means. I get that Google Ad Sense can support one witty schmo's beer nut budget for his regular midnight rantings -- and that this scales. But the fundamentals behind why this works are more interesting. I firmly believe that core qualities are being exposed through these networks that will transform all informational enterprises -- from technical R&D to corporate strategic and market research.

Its not just newspapers, catalogues and libraries... as Goliath might lead you to believe.

Join this conversation. I don't know the exact path, but I know we can figure it out together.