Monthly Archives: November 2013

Russia Takes a Stab at Web 2.0 Decision Making

It’s interesting to look back on the promise that the Web 2.0 movement had at the turn of the century. In the early years, much of the thoughts behind how to change the web were just that, thoughts of some great tech thinkers.

Fast forward to today and you can find that the concepts and ideas behind the Web 2.0 movement are central to the way that people design and use the internet. Now people have access to large social networks through Twitter, Facebook, and Google Plus. You’d be hard pressed to find someone who got on the internet and didn’t check some form of social media.

Still, there are other aspects of the Web 2.0 movement that didn’t quite get adopted as widely as they could have. One of those aspects is the idea that now governments, organizations, and businesses would be able to interact directly with citizens, people, and customers in a way never before seen.

Russia has recently taken that idea to heart as some other governments have, depending on the issues. What they’ve done is allowed internet voting on a new symbol for the Russian currency, the Ruble. Citizens will have a chance to pick the next symbol for their own currency. Talk about direct diplomacy!

Taking steps like this to include the populace or customers is a great way to embrace the thoughts and ideas behind a new internet. It’s unfortunate that more governments and businesses don’t take advantage of the fact that we’re all connected far more than we ever have been in the past. Internet users are a treasure trove of ideas and opinions. Engaging with them is a great way to make sure you’re doing the right thing whether you’re in a business or a government.

Hopefully more efforts like this will catch on around the world. The more we connect and interact, the better our services and products will be.

What’s the Fastest Growing Demographic Online? Seniors

When tech leaders started toying with the idea of a new way to organize the web in the early 2000s, the internet was still the domain of mostly younger generations. Sure, some older people enjoyed using the internet, but a majority of them had no idea about social media and the other platforms that grew out of the shift into Web 2.0.

Now that we’re ten-plus years away from the beginnings of Web 2.0, much has changed. Social Media sites like Facebook, Twitter, and Google+ have come to dominate the web and are now integrated into almost every website out there. Not only this, but the population of users online has grown dramatically.

One of the fastest growing groups online are seniors. Just three years ago, internet users between 50 and 64 grew upwards of 88% in just one year. That pattern has been continuing every year after thanks to technology like tablets and smart phones that makes it easier for them to connect instead of intimidating desktops and laptops. In that same year, the percentage of seniors using social media doubled and has continued at a great pace until now.

If the changes toward a more user-centered internet experience had never been adopted by the biggest tech companies, there’s little evidence that the older population would be adopting the internet as fast as they are. Some of the main reasons that seniors are adopting the internet is for the vast amount of content that’s accessible and the ease of communicating with their loved ones.

Furthermore, it’s a lot easier for them to do their shopping, share photos and videos, and reconnect with old, long-lost friends. Another bonus for seniors online is that there are plenty of opportunities for them to learn something new and to exercise their mind to keep them mentally fit.

Moving forward as younger generations get older, there will be a majority of seniors on the internet. This will definitely be an interesting time for the web. How the web will react to this growing demographic continues to develop and may be a lucrative niche for some smart web designers.


Another Web 2.0 Giant Goes Public: Twitter’s IPO Impresses

Part of the reason the whole notion of Web 2.0 design took off in the early 2000s was because many companies involved were privately run and staffed by excellent talent. These days, a lot has changed and some of these companies are the largest tech companies in the world – large in terms of finances as well as influence.

Google’s stock is a powerhouse on Wall Street and grew rapidly after going public. Facebook had some troubles when it went public. It has taken a year for the Web 2.0 social media giant to recover its value, but things are looking up for Facebook.

Today the news is all about the highly influential internet company Twitter going public. Their IPO has been in the news for weeks, but it has finally happened, without the problems that Facebook faced.

How has Twitter faired since opening to the public? Well, according to USA Today the shares shot up to around $45 and have been holding steady for most of the first day. This is great news for companies that grew out of the Web 2.0 movement and for future of the internet. As these companies grow and are able to do more with the influx in investment, you can bet their influence on the future of the internet will continue to grow with it.

The most impactful change in the internet that came out of the Web 2.0 philosophy was social media. Wall Street and other investors have been encouraged lately that the platform (whether designed like Facebook or like Twitter) still has a very important role to play in the future, especially when it comes to advertising.

It will be a worthwhile endeavor to keep an eye on Twitter now that it is a public company. Facebook certainly changed a great deal after going public, and one can expect that we’ll see at least some changes to Twitter. Hopefully they continue to enhance the company and the experience it provides its users.

Teens Leaving Web 2.0 Powerhouse Facebook

Part of the driving force in the early 2000s for the whole push to a social and communal internet was the development of social media. The largest social media platform on the web is Facebook. For the longest time, its number of users grew and grew, across almost every demographic. However, years after it became the dominant social media platform, a recent trend has seen many younger users leaving Facebook. Where are they going to get their web 2.0 fix?

One of the biggest ways that teens are interacting online is through Instagram. However, this example isn’t exactly bad for Facebook. After all, Facebook owns Instagram. It is interesting to note that many teens are treating Instagram like Facebook, posting photos and then commenting. There are probably around 150 million active users and many more less-than-active users currently on Instagram.

Another app called Snapchat has been snagging plenty of teens from their time on Facebook. Snapchat is not owned by Facebook, but it has seen plenty of growth in recent years. The app allows teens to share photos and messages that disappear in a mere 10 seconds, never to be seen again. The company has even released a Snapkidz this summer because their service was growing popular with the younger demographics.

Kik and WhatsApp are also taking over how teens use the social web. These apps make it very easy for teens to set up custom communications to groups of friends and have their own mini-social media platform. It appears that the teens love the flexibility and customization of these apps versus the one-way-only design of Facebook and similar social media that came out of the web 2.0 era.

No one is 100% certain where the future of social media will go, but knowing that the younger generation is shifting away from Facebook is an interesting bit of information. There’s no doubt that Facebook will be looking to come up with something to lure them back – keep an eye out.