2006-07-26

on chris anderson's long tail

Rough Type: Nicholas Carr's Blog: How large is the long tail?
In his column in the Wall Street Journal today, Lee Gomes tries to debunk Chris Anderson's Long Tail theory, and on his Long Tail blog today, Anderson tries to debunk Gomes's debunking. It's an interesting - and important - debate, and I find myself agreeing with both gentlemen.

there's lots of chatter this week on whether chris anderson's new book (the long tail) is over-selling the power of the internet to shape business models in the future. imho, i would say that that "lthe ong tail" has not been oversold at all. but i do think it's been "over-bought" by some - esp. media-types.

in other words, folks are jumping on this meme without spending time in thought. the echo-chamber is at work here, too. combine that with the 'screaming-headlines' phenom that blog/feeds and other media are falling into and you get shallow mis-statements about the concept of the "long tail." it's even possible that anderson's publishers are guilty of the same over-reaching when penning releases and jacket-blubs.

the discussion should continue to focus on the concept of the long tail itself and how that can affect economies in the future. quibbling about the details of the current lay-of-the-land vis-a-vis market share, growth rate, etc. misses the point entirely.



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