Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Commerce and Community In Web 2.0

Business 2.0 writer Om Malik comments on community vs. commerce in his blog and brings up various questions about Web 2.0 tools and their business models. This is my response to his post:

Isn’t the upside a helpful service? People aren’t using Web 2.0 tools for the hope of some business upside, they’re using the tools because they are helpful at accomplishing their tasks.

Flickr saves me time. Sure, it uses time, but I’d spend even more time managing and sharing my photos over email without flickr.

Del.icio.us saves me time. I’d have to go back and find sites I have since forgotten because I didn’t want them clogging my brower bookmarks, but they were still important.

People wouldn’t use Web 2.0 tools of they were useless.

What’s the business model for some of these companies is the bigger question, but in some cases there might not even need to be one. I’m sure the del.icio.us investors want some return on equity, but I believe del.icio.us has one employee. This isn’t quite reaching the Web 1.0 craziness.

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