Web 2.0 Definition and Hype


I do get very fed up with the Web 2.0 hype and also all the people who complain about the Web 2.0 hype (which now would include me). I think that the only way of fixing this is to have a crisp definition of what Web 2.0 is and then when a piece of hype defines itself as "Web 2.0" then we can just say that it doesn't meet the definition and move on.


I think that Tim's definition at http://radar.oreilly.com/archives/2005/10/web_20_compact_definition.html is pretty good but it is a bit wordy and verbose, certainly for me to remember. Trying to net his definition down to a few key, memorable bullets I get the following five:


Network and devices as a platform

Data consumption and remixing from all sources including user generated data

Continuous update

Rich and interactive UI

Architecture of participation


Does this seem reasonable? Can we use these to categorize if an application is Web 2.0 or not? Thinking about the major Web 2.0 applications out there and indeed the major Web 1.0 , SOA, ASP or SaaS based applications it does seem to work.

Comments (4)

  1. Anonymous says:

    Interesting report by John Seely Brown and John Hagel III in this months McKinsey report on Creation…

  2. Anonymous says:

    "Web2.0" is one of the hot buzzwords right now. But a fuzzy term that a lot of people seem to dislike, because, well, it is a buzzword, and there’s not wide agreement on what exactly it is, or whether it really is something new. But largely

  3. Dion Hinchcliffe says:

    Yes Mike, I do think you might have nailed it pretty close indeed.

    I’d love to tweak a few of these though, such as using ‘Web’ instead of ‘network’ in the first item to emphasize that particular platform as being essential.

    The only thing I’d add is "Leveraging network effects".  Without network effects, many Web 2.0 apps would be much, much less valuable.

    See you tomorrow in Vegas!



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