industry Marketing Memes

Web 2.0 Thinking Game

Come and play. It’s fun!

The most telling detail in The Economist‘s coverage of Google and YouTube was the subhead: “Google’s acquisition of YouTube shows that ‘Web 2.0’ has come of age.” A few weeks back, The Economist was calling “Web 2.0” a trend. Their phrase was, “hot Web 2.0 trend.” The magazine now intends “Web 2.0” to be understood as a sort of second edition:

This week’s pairing of Google and YouTube may come to be remembered as the moment “Web 2.0″—ie, the web, version two—came of age.

Clearly “Web 2.0” means different things to different journalists on different days. Mostly it means nothing—except a bigger paycheck. But let’s simplify what The Economist is saying:

Web 1.0: AOL buys Time Warner.
Web 2.0: Google buys YouTube.

Put another way:

Web 1.0: New media company buys old media company.
Web 2.0: New media company buys new media company.

If we’re stuck with this meaningless Web 2.0 label, let’s at least have some fun with it. Here’s my new game. I’ll start, you finish:

Web 1.0: Joshua Davis on the cover of Art News.
Web 2.0: 37signals on the cover of Forbes.

Web 1.0: Users create the content (Slashdot).
Web 2.0: Users create the content (Flickr).

Web 1.0: Crap sites on Geocities.
Web 2.0: Crap sites on MySpace.

Web 1.0: Writing.
Web 2.0: Rating.

Web 1.0: Karma Points.
Web 2.0: Diggs.

Web 1.0: Cool Site of the Day.
Web 2.0:

Web 1.0: Tags.
Web 2.0: “Tags.”

Web 1.0: Bookmarking.
Web 2.0: Bookmark sharing.

Web 1.0: Pointless Flash widgets.
Web 2.0: Pointless “Ajax” widgets.

Now you try it!

[tags]web2.0, games, economist[/tags]

By Jeffrey Zeldman

“King of Web Standards”—Bloomberg Businessweek.

Hi! I’m a principal designer at Automattic, Inc. Also: Publisher and founder, A List Apart “for people who make websites.” Publisher and co-founder, A Book Apart—brief books for people who design, write, and code. Co-founder and co-host, An Event Apart UX & front-end conference. Faculty, MFA Interaction Design, School of Visual Arts, NYC. Host, The Big Web Show. Have written two books, notably ”Designing With Web Standards,“ currently in its 3rd Edition, and, on last count, translated into 15 languages and used as a text in 85 universities.