May 23, 2012

Disintermediation


Via

Following on yesterday’s post and this one, I’ve been thinking about disintermediation.  That’s when you take out the middle man, the gatekeeper.  It’s what Amazon did to the big publishing companies and what the internet does for artists every day. 

The world, it’s a changing.

Witness:

Everyone in the world (on a computer with internet access) potentially has one degree of separation from every other person in the world.

We can find our tribe, our 1,000 true fans, i.e., other people who love what we love and what we do. This of course is Seth Godin’s idea.

For some things, we’ve gone from an economic model of scarcity to an economic model of abundance.  This is one of Corey Doctorow’s big ideas.  Let me explain.  It used to be that you’d make/print so many things/books.  There was a finite number.  Then consumers competed for that finite amount.  This is why diamonds are so expensive, that and good marketing/killing the competition.  Now, whenever you buy a book or music, you are actually creating a new copy, rather than taking one out of the system. Consuming actually equals creating.

Change is a scary thing, and I would guess it’s contributing to the swing back toward conservatism.  If something new is on the horizon, it’s human nature to cling tightly to what you know, to old systems.

But change, too, is a lovely thing.  It challenges us, and what doesn’t kill us makes us stronger and helps us to live life more fully. Evolution.

But back to disintermediation.  Also a lovely thing.  Think about it: you are one or two clicks away from connecting with every fellow human on earth.  Just that far from love, from world peace. A Human Spring.

I’m just saying.

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