The New Internet is upon us. Faster connections, bigger hard drives, cheaper hosting, online storage, highly interactive user-driven web sites… The Web 2.0 paradigm is ubiquitous, and nearly every connected individual has at least one online presence, be it a blog, social network profile, personal home page, or even simply a private email address.
The New Internet knows no boundaries. The New Internet rejects shackles, allows users to bypass regulations, allows surfers to obfuscate their identities. The New Internet is driven by users, where users provide content and exchange information, provide software, patch software, share software. The founding Ethos of the White Hat Hacker is gradually being rediscovered by the main stream once more; the Ethos pushing the boundaries of law in favour of user freedom, and battling the Renegade Hackers, known as Crackers, or Black-Hats.
The revolution is gaining speed. The New Internet threatens the old models of business. The New Internet is democratic to the extreme, liberal and community driven. The New Internet promotes the Equality of each and every individual in the world. The New Internet is a platform for absolute freedom – for better or for worse.
But enough rhetoric.
The New Internet dictates the New Face of eCommerce, and observes four realities:
- That which can technically be copied will effectively be copied.
- If a resource is meant for the public, it will be made available without constraints.
- If a user can obfuscate their identity, they will.
- The User Base, the population of the New Internet, dictates the direction of the online market.
Business models that forget these basic realities about the New Internet will fail.
Marketable goods must correspond to at least one of these properties:
- tangible Item
- reliable Guarantee
- enjoyable Experience
Only these can be sold online, for only they have meaning in the Real World on their own. Anything that can be copied and/or provided by oneself cannot be sold.
Multimedia is digital. Multimedia Business will undergo a revolution. This is how I see Business on the New Internet:
With the advent of the electronic books, printed books will become collectibles. The will to save paper and to carry vast quantities of literature in a lightweight format will outweigh the need for printed copies in day-to-day life.
Novels, newspapers, manuals and magazines will all be available in electronic form.
Radio guarantees broadcast of highly intelligible communication even in the most cut-off areas of the World and Space.
Communication expert, guarantee of wireless communication, and provider of background information and entertainment, the Radio lives on relatively unaltered.
The Artists will retain ownership of their works. Companies will pay for licenses to publish the work of Artists, along with works from other artists, in any format.
Published Collections with glossy Cover art, and witty commentary become the sold goods. Concerts are the main marketable commodity.
Photographers and painters release their work under Non-Commercial Creative Commons licenses. Their work is found on the Net, and companies hire the best and brightest of them to forward their image.
Originals sell. Signed prints are the marketable goods. Art by Commission returns.
The View-and-Leave model is over. High-definition screens and high-bandwidth provide home cinema experience.
Affordable Event Cinema houses allow web users to determine viewings, and provide film-relevant events and entertainment after viewings.
High Event Cinema going is a mix of experiences; tours of actors, producers, artists and technicians accompany the live showing of films, followed by conferences with the artists – composer interviews and concerts, talks with graphic designers, technology seminars and all associated trades take place.
High-transfer rates on the Net removes broadcast station monopoly. Stations are backed by advertising, content is provided online. On-demand viewing provides always higher-quality image and sound, and 100% uptime, no load wait.
Extra hardware for audio and visual quality are sold or leased, guaranteed uptime is the marketed service.
The console rules the roost. PC gaming is online and requires subscription for advanced experience. Subscriptions are linked to bank accounts, not readily available emails or copiable and subvertible product keys. In-game time sinks, real or perceived, are removed to maintain game reputation.
The best engineers lead projects and know limitations and capabilities of software. They lead and direct open-source programmers who provide code on an allegiance basis.
Home software is free; commercial software runs businesses, and guarantee fixes and customization – bespoke tailoring of base-package solutions.
Support is the main revenue stream.
Online accounts are hosted by security services, staffed by White Hats. They monitor accounts and pro-actively battle Black Hat intruders.
DRM will fail, but document privatization of documents will prevail. Private documents require a server for decoding. Stronger algorithms protect documents. Privatized documents survived where DRM failed, because DRM servers could be shut down at the whim of providers. Companies have functional interest in keeping authentication servers up. Companies providing DRM content did not.
Is your business ready for the New Internet?