Is The End Near? Are We In A Bubble?

March 19th, 2007 | Categories: social media, trends

About six months back, there was a lot of talk as to whether the ‘web 2.0 space’ was in a bubble. I didn’t believe it was. And just to set the record straight, I still don’t believe it is. However, things aren’t the same as they used to be. Is the end near? I hope not…

It just seems that the energy level around new start-ups has faded. The glory days of TechCrunch seem like a thing of the past. Recent trends I’m seeing with respect to blog posts include lack of enthusiasm, re-hashed stories, and uninspiring material. I just don’t hear the same types of conversations as I used to.

Furthermore, the Alexa rankings on a lot of the big web 2.0 blogs are dropping like flies. Perhaps this lack of enthusiasm in centered more around the blogosphere itself than the start-up world. Perhaps bloggers are getting burnt out. Is there a blog bubble?

Or maybe, just maybe… nobody else feels this way and it’s just me…

Like I say, I’m not convinced that the entrepreneurial/start-up world is engulfed in a bubble necessarily. We still have yet to see the ridiculous financings, IPO’s, and huge influxes of liquidity, as witnessed during the tech boom and bust of the late 90’s.

To top it off, most of the high-flying major players of the web 2.0 revolution have been acquired. In other words, the concept of growth and leadership has been blurred by integration and management. I’m talking about such companies as YouTube, Flickr,, and Skype to name a few. Instead of organic entities, they have morphed into building blocks which form the basis for these gigantic, bureaucratic Internet monoliths. This is also where passion and company morale begin to fade…

No, I’m not in a pissy mood. It is not that ‘time of month’. Yes, it is Monday, but that has nothing to do with this. My negativity simply stems from what I am seeing around me. The current state of the blogging landscape is not what it used to be. I’m not suggesting Armageddon is near, but I do believe that a catalyst of some sort is needed to spark new growth and enthusiasm.

Your thoughts and beliefs are much appreciated…


  1. Nick O'Neill Says:

    Hi Aidan,

    I understand your suggestion that the buzz is dying, but I think it is in reality a maturing market. Blogs are not as new on the scene and the popular ones now have loyal readers who basically check out a couple blogs on a regular basis. There are still startups that are popping up, but how many can get bought out for $1.65 billion? I think the growth is there, but you just need to look a little harder now that many of the web 2.0 entrepreneurs are trying to build their businesses.

    I agree with you in that the growth of new startups has slowed a little, but that’s because there isn’t an infinite base of true internet entrepreneurs. They are all employed now!

  2. Aidan Says:

    Hey Nick,

    Some great thoughts there. We are definitely in a maturing industry. However, it almost seems hard to define the Internet itself as ever being mature in any sense of the term. New technologies and trends are surfacing on a regular basis, increasing our productivity and facilitating our daily lives.

    There is definitely some liquidity left as well. It just isn’t as abundant and widespread.

    Although I seemed cynical, I am still very exciting about the future growth of the net, new technologies, and blogging. The growth however may occur at a slightly slower rate.


  3. Nick O'Neill Says:

    Hey Aidan,

    Thought I’d add one more thing to the conversation. I read an interesting article by Scoble that talks about a consolidation of Web 2.0 companies. I think he may have some good points in that all of these startups are going to start needing revenue at some point. I have to agree … I consult for a company who’s future revenue is based on advertisers. Interesting stuff.


  4. Alexander Vassbotn Røyne Says:

    I do not think that the end is near either, but case studies and history itself shows us one key thing: history will repeat itself.

    We all remember the dotcom bubble, the wap bubble and now we are in a new bubble. You can also related this matter to “The Long Tail” phenomenon ( , new sites grow fast in the start and dabs off. That is just the way it is. For more reading on the web 2.0 subject, you can check my article on the hype here:

  5. Theo Tonca Says:

    The hype from the web 2.0 “heyday” certainly has died down. But i’m starting to hear more and more that web 2.0 was more or less a prelude to the semantic web (web 3.0)

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