Knowing the answer is good. Building it is better.

The Economist asks, Will Facebook, MySpace and other social-networking sites transform advertising? Third paragraph in, there is this:

  Messrs Lazarsfeld and Katz, of course, assumed that most of these conversations and their implicit marketing messages would remain inaudible. That firms might be able to eavesdrop on this chatter first became conceivable in the 1990s, with the rise of the internet. Thus the main thesis of “The Cluetrain Manifesto”, written in 1999, was that “markets are conversations” which the web can make transparent.

That misses the original point. I get back to it in What could be better than advertising?, over in .

1 comment

  1. Seth Finkelstein’s avatar

    On the contrary, I think it gets the point quite readily.

    Y’know Doc, I see you writing what’s essentially the same post over and over. It’s basically:

    “Corporations, only use your newfound manipulative powers for Good instead of Evil. I SAY SO. THIS IS WHAT I WANTED YOU TO DO! Sez me. That’s what I meant …”.

    There are so many stories with the plotline of powers given to an unworthy recipient who then proceeds to use them in a corrupt manner, it’s sad you don’t recognize when you’re living out one (taking the above sentiment at face value, for the sake of discussion).

    Critics keep pointing this out to you, over and over. And you keep replying you’re a nice guy and want lions and lambs to lay down together. And the critics respond that you’re only leading lambs to the slaughter. And you say that’s not what you meant to do. Repeat. Repeat. Repeat.

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