A Second-Wave-Dot-Com Success

February 22, 2010

Etsy, an up and coming if not already prominent art based site on the web, has gained the reputation of fitting the checklist for a second-wave-dot-com success. This site, similar to eBay, has been thriving off of artisans work while keeping the integrity of the pieces and the type of site it is.

I have actually been on Etsy’s site many times and find it really fascinating to see what they have picked up and from whom. The user-generated content has not only helped both the artist and them gain a profit, but has kept alive this feel of original art unaffected by corporations or mainstream trends.

The way this online business was created sounds similar to the way Google and other small starting big idea organizations have, so it is easy to see how people think it has the ability to be a dot com success. This made me wonder…what other sites offer artists a place to show and sell their original work for Internet surfers and art enthusiasts to discover?

One site I realized was somewhat similar to Etsy, as well as one I was purchasing from, is called Threadless. This site allows artists to design the prints and art on t-shirts and present it on this site to the public. Etsy also harnesses the power of word-of-mouth and content created by artists. So maybe this is another user-generated, art based site that may be another dot com success.

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I think some of the online auction sites are organized based on the date items are placed on the site and the popularity of the type of item. Many times the popularity of the item is decided not by the site but by the people who visit and their ranking of objects.

This lends itself to interactivity in that people are placing their original items or previously owned stuff (making this user-generated content) on a site for sale. Much like the Threadless and Etsy site I talked about above. Other interactivity includes the ability for shoppers to choose what items they want to view and even choose what price range or the time they were posted online. There is also a feedback option where people can rate not only quality of what’s being sold, but the quality of the person shipping the item to them.

As digital interactivity has changed many aspects of how we do things in our daily lives, I have found one creation that I wish I had come up with first.

The touch screen has changed the way we use computers, phones, are exposed to advertisements and even how we teach our children. It has become considered the epitome of convenience as well as technological advancement.

Take, for instance, the phone as an example. Our cellular phones were great portable means of communicating but now they are much more. They are basically a computer that keeps our schedules, communicates beyond the normal voice to voice by utilizing e-mail or texting, and supplies us with Internet access, games, music or even GPS navigation.

What’s the most popular phone today that have these capabilities? The Apple iPhone that comes complete with…you guessed it, a touch screen.

iphone's touch screen

One of the most exciting TED conferences of 2006 was actually the reveal of Jeff Han’s high-resolution multi-touch sensing touch screen and his statement of “there is no reason in this day in age where we should be conforming to a physical device…we have so much technology now a days that these interfaces should be conforming to us.”

To view the conference, go to: http://www.ted.com/talks/lang/eng/jeff_han_demos_his_breakthrough_touchscreen.html

Why was this such a good idea? The touch screen is considered convenient because, as Jeff Han states, it conforms to us and allows us to accomplish what we want with the swipe or movement of a finger…and what is simpler then that?