The Cluetrain Manifesto

September 10, 2017

An interesting book where Rick Levine, Chris Locke, Doc Searls, and David Weinberger posted 95 theses on the web, asserting that there was a new reality of the networked marketplace.

This was written in 1999 and many of the points still resonant today.

There are so many wonderful quotes such as:

Just because you’re not seeing a revolution — or what Hollywood has told you a revolution ought to look like — doesn’t mean there isn’t one going down.

A useful expert is not someone with (containing) all the answers but someone who knows where to find answers. The new experts have value not by centralizing information and control but by being great “pointers” to other people and to useful, current information.

The most important lesson Linux hackers teach is that whole markets can rapidly arise out of conversations that are independent not only of business, but also of government, education, and other powerful but hidebound institutions, thanks in large measure to something hackers helped invent precisely for that purpose: the Internet.

The Internet is inherently seditious. It undermines unthinking respect for centralized authority, whether that “authority” is the neatly homogenized voice of broadcast advertising or the smarmy rhetoric of the corporate annual report.

The Net grew like a weed between the cracks in the monolithic steel-and-glass empire of traditional commerce. It was technically obscure, impenetrable, populated by geeks and wizards, loners, misfits. When I started using the Internet, nobody gave a damn about it outside of a few big universities and the military-industrial complex they served. In fact, if you were outside that favored circle, you couldn’t even log on. The idea that the Internet would someday constitute the world’s largest marketplace would have been laughable if anyone was entertaining such delusions back then. I began entertaining them publicly in 1992 and the laughter was long and loud.

I couldn’t help but to apply the thinking in 1999 on the Internet to the 2008 invention of bitcoins. In fact, the crypto revolution is nearly 10 years old and the majority of us are still in the dark about it. Of course the crypto revolution has had wave after wave of innovation. From bitcoins to altcoins, then on to blockchains, smart contracts and now the latest wave the ICO. Initial Coin Offering.

Where to next? We shall all wait with baited breath!

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