Friday, February 15, 2008

The Third Culture

Kevin Kelly describes the Internet as a copy machine.
At its most foundational level, it copies every action, every character, every thought we make while we ride upon it. In order to send a message from one corner of the internet to another, the protocols of communication demand that the whole message be copied along the way several times. IT companies make a lot of money selling equipment that facilitates this ceaseless copying. Every bit of data ever produced on any computer is copied somewhere. The digital economy is thus run on a river of copies. Unlike the mass-produced reproductions of the machine age, these copies are not just cheap, they are free.

So is there anything left that cannot be copied and maybe is better than free?

According to Kelly there exist eight categories of "intangible value", "eight things that are better than free", eight uncopyable values. Kelly calls these qualities generatives that add value to free copies, and "therefore are something that can be sold".

Eight generatives better than free

  1. Immediacy

  2. Personalization

  3. Interpretation

  4. Authenticity

  5. Accessibility

  6. Embodiment

  7. Patronage

  8. Findability

More ...

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