Umair Haque / Bubblegeneration
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Design principles for 21st century companies, markets, and economies. Foreword by Gary Hamel. Coming January 4th. Pre-order at Amazon.

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

Media 2.0 - Barriers to Complementarity

Tom Coates says he won't link to any more NYT articles (or even read them), because of the irritating reg process.

Look, I hate to pick on the NYT again - but the fundamental strategic error Media 1.0 firms make in shifting to Media 2.0 is going to be building strong barriers around their goods. In a Media 2.0 world, these barriers don't protect the value of your good - they destroy it.

Without going into too much detail, the fundamental source of Media 2.0 value creation is scarce attention. The most efficient way to allocate scarce attention is to open your good up, because then others can cheaply produce complements.

Complementarity can let your goods snowball - others can add cool stuff to them. These other can be peers, professionals - anyone at all - nwo that barriers to producing media have fallen.

In this case, the NYT's imitation barriers - registration - also become complementarity barriers. They don't just block losses, they block gains as well.

The complementarity loss is Tom commenting on NYT articles - which won't happen anymore. That may seem like a small loss, but the point is that Media 2.0 is about increasing returns - value snowballs. Value can't snowball if you build barriers around your goods.

I think a lot of Media 1.0 firms will never be able to wrap their heads around this, because it's so radically different from using IPR (or registration, etc) to protect your goods from imitation - wprotection was a strategy that did work in a Media 1.0 world - it's a strategy that will absolutely kill you in a Media 2.0 world.

-- umair // 8:37 PM // 0 comments


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