Participation is what’s creating the value

There is so much focus today on tagging, RSS, on social this, or social that, but what’s fueling this next generation of the Web is participation.

Web 1.0 was heavy on people being passive recipients of content and performing minimal interaction (exception being ecommerce). Those organizations building the first Web were all about “first mover advantage” while trying to attract people and build a critical mass of “users” with “eyeballs”.

Web 2.0 relies on participation of people as the primary creation of value. It also relies on others that — by virtue of their consumption of this user created content — promote the most popular of it within these applications thus adding to its value. Even offerings like Writely and MySpace exist due to collaboration and interactions that occur within the application itself.

One could argue, “Hey Borsch…participation is obvious. Web 2.0 is really about the technology and and the internet as a platform.  What makes this nextgen Web different than the first is search, tagging, rich internet user interfaces like Ajax, microformats, AdSense, The Long Tail, yadda-yadda-yadda.”  Valid argument…but the difference between the dotcom bubble and right now is that it’s the input from people that matters and is what supplies the energy to drive these new offerings. Not just consumption. Nor only viewing or listening. But adding value to the Web application by virtue of it being used and accelerating in value through the network effect.

One space, blogging, amazes me with its use as well as the acceleration of tools and technologies harvesting the participation of the masses (though the buzz today is that blogs are in their twilight or have peaked). Technorati, Google, Yahoo, Icerocket and other blog search tools, the emerging “conversation trackers” like memeorandum, CoComment and Topix, all exist because of the participation and input from bloggers, commenters, and readers. These others are extracting ever increasing value from the conversations occurring in the blogosphere.

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

About Steve Borsch

Strategist. Learner. Idea Guy. Salesman. Connector of Dots. Friend. Husband & Dad. CEO. Janitor. More here.

Facebook | Twitter | LinkedIn

Posts by Category

Archives (2004 – Present)

Connecting the Dots Podcast

Podcasting hit the mainstream in July of 2005 when Apple added podcast show support within iTunes. I'd seen this coming so started podcasting in May of 2005 and kept going until August of 2007. Unfortunately was never 'discovered' by national broadcasters, but made a delightfully large number of connections with people all over the world because of these shows. Click here to view the archive of my podcast posts.