Friday, December 05, 2008

What if Blogger goes down?

A good day in the markets, I'll take it. But still, these days I find myself looking around at aspects of my life and thinking: is it bubble, or is it not?

It is disquieting at times to think how the contours of my for-profit career conform with those of the bubble: starting in April, 2000, weeks before the first big down day of that correction (last one in the door), ending... well, hopefully not soon.

Through the housing bubble we all looked at house prices and said "this doesn't seem right." It was standard dinner party fair, giddy with disbelief over how paper rich we all were. So we knew it had to end, we just didn't want to be right.

And now, when I think of the things that seem bubblelicious, the first thing I think of is social networking: Blogger, Facebook, MySpace, LinkedIn, Wikipedia, YouTube all this great stuff we get for free and take for granted. Where are the business models? We have to look at 2.0, with its largely unfounded business models, and say it also doesn't seem right, though it feels so right. Mark Zuckerberg at Facebook wanted to let employees cash out a little stock at a valuation of a quarter of what Microsoft bought a stake for last year, but he had to cancel it because even at that level he couldn't find buyers. Facebook offers Twitter $500 million but Twitter says no because it has a secret business model? Please. LinkedIn stands on its own, and maybe blog engines cost nothing. Wikipedia has been slowly trying to crowdsource $6 mln for weeks, and it's coming together step by step.

Seriously, where would we be without this stuff? I'd be hurtin.

What else could go?
Municipal yard waste pick-up?
Address stickers from charities?

Seriously, we get a lot of free stuff now.

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