Wednesday, 6 December 2006

The Portal is the Network

This morning, Peter and I were discussing a post by Fred Wilson on the deportalization of the Internet.

Personally I think Google has been building a portal in reverse. With all the different services they are adding on to their main search function, Google should look like a better designed Yahoo in no time. Now of course, they are smarter about it because they are not trying to centralize the eyeballs, but as long as they are centralizing all the data, it doesn't really matter does it? As Fred puts it
they have "introduced a monetization system that existed off its own network".

Peter furthered that thought and noted that what is happening is just a redefinition of the whole notion. While portal used to mean an entrance point to MY websites, now portal has opened itself up as any good healthy ecosystem should, to the Web in general. It is a starting point to discover the network.

In Peter's words, "when you are as pervasive as google the network is the portal"


Mark said...

Leigh, it's a classic reversal: In the prior age, value was attained by getting people to come to you. Capture eyeballs. Site stickiness. The idea of portal merely restates being a gatekeeper. These are all based in a mentality that tries to capture a potentially fragmented market (with fragmentation being a characteristic of the literate mentality). In a UCaPP* world, we should expect a reversal: value is attained not by capturing people who come to you, but by sending them away (to connect with one another). That's the secret of Google's value - they have always been exceptional at sending people away.

*Ubiquitously Connected and Pervasively Proximate

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