Wednesday, November 09, 2005

Web 2.0 Meeting

Last night, Robbie and I went to a Web 2.0 meeting at Tommy Doyle's in Cambridge. We wandered over there after partaking in the delicious beer and cheese plates and pumpkin beer at Cambridge Brewing Company...yummm....

Dharmesh had told us about the meeting, and we were really looking forward to it. It had an interesting format: half an hour of mingling, half an hour of presentations, and then more mingling. The room was absolutely packed. I was very impressed by the size of the crowd.

Before the presentation, we spoke a little with Derek (sorry if the name is wrong) of Element55, a company that tracks billing for lawyers. It sounded like a very interesting project with technology that incorporated phone call length and destination into an automated biling system.

The three presenters were Reddit, Blogniscient and Kiko. All three presentations were well done, and the technologies and ideas were forward-thinking.

However, they reminded me a little too much of the late nineties, when many companies had great products, great presentations, and no business models. None of the companies mentioned business models in their presentations. One responded they were hoping to fund through advertising when asked by someone in the audience. Robbie and I assumed the other two companies were looking to do the same.

Until someone comes up with a viable strategy for actually making money in Web 2.0, a lot of these brilliant ideas and hard work may end up having been wasted.


Mane the Mean said...

Many of the small companies do not even try
to make any real revenue or profit. They just
try to ride the WEB2.0-hype, make a lot of
noise and convince some Yahoo, Google, etc
to buy the company.

I think they cannot say this aloud, so they appear
not to have any business strategy. But they do
have a very clear one.

Ben Ruedlinger said...

Pitching the company concept, demo, AND business model in the 5 minutes we were alotted was definitely a challenge. I for one, did not get to the business model part. I intend to do a blog post ( ) on this in the near future, but will say a little about it here.

Blogniscient's business model centers around partnering with traditional media outlets (including Web 1.0 companies). As readership of newspapers and other media is starting to decline, we see Blogniscient as a way to give a company's readers access to a whole other universe of information with blogs.

How would this work? Let's take entertainment as an example. We would partner with companies like E! Online, Star Magazine, or USA Today. We would provide an API that would allow them to access Blogniscient's rankings for the blog content in our entertainment category ( ). While currently we have Celebrtiy Gossip and Music within Entertainment, we will soon have TV and Movies as well. Having access to Blogniscient's rankings would allow E! Online's users to access the top entertainment content from around the Blogosphere directly through their site. This would make E! Online the portal to the entertainment Blogosphere for many of their readers. It provides much of the valuable information available, while keeping their readers where they want them (at E! Online).

I hope this answers your question at a high level. If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to drop me a line.

Ben Ruedlinger, PhD
President, Blogniscient, Inc.

Ilana said...

Thanks very much for your thoughtful response!