What’s Next After Web 2.0
Written by Richard MacManus / December 31, 2008
In the past week some high profile VCs have been preaching belt tightening as the primary response to the economy. More than a few people have expressed cynicism about this advice, given the hype and party-throwing days of Web 2.0. New York VC Fred Wilson wrote a post today, partly in response to a comment Bernard left on his blog, in which he defends the advice he and other VCs have been giving since the financial crisis got going. Basically that advice has been to batten down the hatches, reduce spending and, in Fred’s words, “act responsibly and make sure we all survive to fight another day”.
It’s all common sense advice, especially since Web 2.0 has been predominantly about consumer apps. I’m certainly no economist, but it makes sense that in a tight credit market, consumer spending will reduce – which will impact heavily on consumer web apps, and trickle through to other parts of the ecosystem.
But I’d love to see technologists, entrepreneurs and VCs take a longer term view of this crisis as well. Sramana Mitra wrote a great post at Forbes outlining some of the opportunities for innovation. In an “Open Letter to the Leaders of Silicon Valley”, Sramana first gave some background on the innovation that led to Web 2.0 and followed up with a challenge to create technology for education, health care, social security. As an example, she wrote about these opportunities in healthcare and education:
“As the smart-phone movement marches on, led by Steve Jobs’ iPhone, can we not create seamless bridges between doctors, patients and insurance providers that can reduce the $250 billion expenditure in health care administration?
And on the Internet, can we not create a body of standardized content and methodology for teachers all over the U.S.–or the world–that includes parents in the process and engages children via “edutainment,” the same way MySpace and “World of Warcraft” engage kids?”
Full article at http://www.readwriteweb.com