October 21, 2005
@ 03:35 PM

As I mentioned in my previous post on Understanding Web 2.0 the "web 2.0" meme isn't about technology or people, it's about money and hype primarily geared at VCs and big companies looking for small companies to buy so they look hip. The recently launched Flock web browser is one of example of a "Web 2.0" product which looks like it's creators just played a game of buzzword bingo when deciding what to do with their millions in VC funding. It is built on Firefox (bing), integrates with del.icio.us (bing) and Flickr (bing), plus it comes with blog posting (bing!) and RSS reading features (bingo!).

I have to agree with Joel Spolsky's claim that the Architecture Astronauts Are Back when he wrote

I'm starting to see a new round of pure architecture astronautics : meaningless stringing-together of new economy buzzwords in an attempt to sound erudite.

When I wrote my original complaint about architecture astronauts more than four years ago, it was P2P this and messaging that.

"That's one sure tip-off to the fact that you're being assaulted by an Architecture Astronaut: the incredible amount of bombast; the heroic, utopian grandiloquence; the boastfulness; the complete lack of reality. And people buy it! The business press goes wild!"

Now it's tagging and folksonomies and syndication, and we're all supposed to fall in line with the theory that cool new stuff like Google Maps, Wikipedia, and Del.icio.us are somehow bigger than the sum of their parts. The Long Tail! Attention Economy! Creative Commons! Peer production! Web 2.0!

The term Web 2.0 particularly bugs me. It's not a real concept. It has no meaning. It's a big, vague, nebulous cloud of pure architectural nothingness. When people use the term Web 2.0, I always feel a little bit stupider for the rest of the day.
Not only that, the very 2.0 in Web 2.0 seems carefully crafted as a way to denegrate the clueless "Web 1.0" idiots, poor children, in the same way the first round of teenagers starting dotcoms in 1999 dissed their elders with the decade's mantra, "They just don't get it!"

I'll do my part. I hereby pledge never again to use the term "Web 2.0" on this blog, or to link to any article that mentions it. You're welcome.

I feel the same way. I am interested in discussions on the Web as a platform and even folksonomies (not tagging) but the marketplace of ideas has been polluted by all this "Web 2.0" garbage. Once again, I've flipped the bozo bit on Web 2.0. Like Joel, you won't see any use of the term on my blog or in items I link to from now on.