Sunday, June 11, 2006

E-Prime makes attack on "Web 2.0" -- or maybe it's "Page Views 2.0"

Yesterday I came across the Wikipedia entry on Quantum Psychology which in turn led me to E and E-Prime (an excerpt from Robert Anton Wilson's book Quantum Psychology: How Brain Software Programs You & Your World):

In 1949, D. David Bourland Jr. proposed the abolition of all forms of the words "is" or "to be" and the Bourland proposal (English without "isness") he called E-Prime, or English-Prime. ... It seems likely that persons trained in E-Prime will grow more cautious about their perceptions and not "rush to judgement" in the manner of most of us throughout history.
The pundits writing about "Web 2.0" should start expressing themselves in E-prime. (And the same for commentators in just about any other field that you care to name: politics, religion, sports, advertising, news reporting, the list is endless.)

Let's do away with the endless hype, hallucinatory evangelizing, and paralyzing pontifications! Let's adopt more precise, neutral language wherever possible. Life would be duller, though, and certainly more verbose. More "common sense" and less flair; maybe it would be worth it.

UPDATE - 16 June 2006 11:38AM (Melbourne, Australia time):
Joyfully celebarating the birth of a second grandson less than three hours ago!

Meanwhile, I not that on 11 June in his Read/WriteWeb blog, Richard MacManus opines that it really should be called "Page Views 2.0" because:
"... the fundamental reason why 'Web 2.0' is (dare I say it) in bubble phase right now. It's the exact same reason the Dot Com bubble occured - Page Views... which in this era leads to ads.

Drive as many users to your site as humanly possible - that's the modus operandi of all websites, web 2.0 or not.

These days, 2005-06-onwards, the idea is very much to - you guessed it - gather as many users as possible. Only this time you can monetize them with Google ads, or your own advertisers/sponsors."

So there you have it. They're all in it for the money.

This makes me feel like an altruist -- or perhaps an idiot -- because my web site and weblogs are virtually ad-free and largely non-commercial (except for relatively low-key advertising of my IT consulting services plus NotesTracker product, and the products of my small number of business partners). And I'm silly enough to give away some free Lotus Notes/Domino applications. Oh well, it takes all types doesn't it.

UPDATE -- 08 September 2006:
Just came across this little gem, enabling you to generate your own Web 2.0 hype ... The Web 2.0 Bullshit Generator

See also Fight the Bull (backup link here).

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