Web 2.0 – Technical Revolution? or Marketing Spin?

Friday 19 October 2007, 2:36PM

One of the most commonly used terms on the world wide web (WWW) today is the phrase "Web 2.0" and a recent article by ProActive Software Ltd, the flagship company for project management software ProWorkflow, has brought a lot of attention to the term and the misrepresentation it construes.

The article outlined the history of the internet's growth and the evolution which has brought so many to market their online products using “Web 2.0” as a key point.

Using Wikipedia, the online encyclopaedia, as a reference the article highlighted the term “Web 2.0” as merely a shift in usability for users of the internet's functions.

“Although the term suggests a new version of the World Wide Web (WWW), it does not refer to an update to Web technical specifications, but to changes in the ways software developers and end-users use and interact with the web as a platform."

According to Tim O'Reilly, "Web 2.0 is the business revolution in the computer industry caused by the move to the internet as platform, and an attempt to understand the rules for success on that new platform."

Some technology experts, notably Tim Berners-Lee, have questioned whether one can use the term in a meaningful way, since many of the Technology components of "Web 2.0" have existed since the early days of the Web."- Wikipedia

While the WWW has advanced significantly since inception and it seems every year the advancements outstrip the sum total of all the previous years put together, the point noted was there really is no new version of the WWW.

In reality more and more people are finding the WWW to be an increasingly reliable and useful tool in their work and everyday life needs and marketers have capitalized on this by coining the phrase “Web 2.0”.

There has been a large volume of banter and amazement at this new flood of 'amazing' innovation, especially so since almost all of the technology supposedly "driving the Web 2.0 revolution" has been around for a while. Maybe the most significant change is increasing bandwidth and anywhere access.

The article has been so popular it has been syndicated to over 100 websites, forums and posts world wide in the last three weeks and has spawned a wave of discussion throughout internet industries about whether to continue to use a term which has been misrepresented by marketers.

Have you joined the conversation yet?