Mr Greenspuns internet angle : LUSENET : computer radio : One Thread

Mr Greenspun was an interesting guest and is an obviously brilliant man. However, his angle on the use of the internet, in relation to business, seems purely academic. I think that his suggestions are all viable and productive internet uses, but the application of these ideas to the business realm seem mostly superficial. The Internet, as far a traditional businesses are concerned, is really first and foremost an advertisement media. Conducting viable sales over the infobahn will be narrowly limited to the infosystem industry and it's relations for some time to come, and Mr. Greenspun's accomplishemnts will remain the tassels which are adorning the gloss covered billboard that the WWW has come to be. Then again, I could be wrong?

-- Brett McInerney (, October 28, 1997


Maybe, maybe not

I think Greenspun had some pretty good ideas. And that's where I think businesses on the Internet miss the boat in general. it's not just abuot selling and advertising. You really do need more interaction and of those sites I frequently, like Motely Fools, not only do I get good information I can have a dialogue with other people who visit the site as well. And they aren't really selling anything, yet, they are one of the busiest sites on the Internet.

The sites that do sell things like, offer more than just a point and click, advertise and buy model and that's what makes brand loyalty. It's kind of like the Oscar Meyer Wienermobile. Sure they're selling hot dogs, but they are doing more than just selling.

-- anonymously answered, October 28, 1997

You're wrong, dammit! (but thanks for listening) Seriously, though, my Panasonic vacuum cleaner ran out of bags the other day. I would have had to drive 5 miles (pretty far by Boston standards) to get replacements because these things aren't sold at the supermarket. I typed "Panasonic C3 bags" into AltaVista (took me 15 seconds; my home computer is permanently connected to the Net). 10 seconds later I was looking at an order form from some company in Indiana. Three days later I had the bags by mail. Saved me 30 minutes.

Read chapter 2 of my book ( ) and then tell me if all of my business ideas are superficial!

(Though I'm prepared to believe that they are. My new personal Web server cost $500,000 and eats up $38,000/year in a hardware maintenance contract so I'd hate to think how I'd turn a profit from my tassels.)

-- Philip Greenspun (, December 13, 1997.

Let's do a little math. A 10 mile round-trip, parking lot time, struggling with the other shoppers, and the impossibly long check out lines commonly found this time of year will probably NEVER take you 3 days to complete. Even in Alaska, delivery to the "Bush" doesn't take 3 days. Iteractivity provided by internet business is primarily worthless at this date due to the saturation of the lower 48's market by consumables. No one truly NEEDS to buy in cybermalls. No one turly NEEDS to buy over the TV. We're not saving time or money when a simple trip down the street can prevent an idling peroid of 3 DAYS! Your point is moot, Mr. Greenspun.

-- Brett McInerney (, December 15, 1997.

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