Everything Old is New Again: Recycling Business Models
“Sooner or later, everything old is new again” - Stephen King
Have you ever heard the saying that every new movie rips off Shakespeare in one form or another? Or, more likely, that into one of several generic story archetypes?
This is how I try to think about technology sometimes.
Growing up, most interactions fell into the ‘commerce’ or, as time went on, the ‘eCommerce’ bucket, where you would pay money and receive a product or service. If you’ve gone shopping, this is what I mean. Even early examples of Paul Graham’s ‘digital mall,’ which was acquired by Yahoo fit examples of this.
Then, in my tween years (early 1990s), I heard about Columbia House, which was the evolution of commerce/eCommerce through a subscription service. They, along BMG Music Service, were famous for pioneering a mail order CD deals like “12 for the price of one.” The catch was that you were then supposed to...
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