Napster and the Filtering Effect of Weblogs

Last night my friend Anthony and I were reminiscing about Napster. That system allowed something that I think led to its incredible growth (aside from the free music). Napster allowed me to view another person’s music collection online.

If I found someone sharing a song I liked, I could check out their shared music collection- and many times I found that our tastes were remarkably similar. In which case, I’d download a bunch of songs from them and feel great about my new additions- I'd found a gold mine of my favorites because we have similar tastes.

In my mind, the same availability of personal tastes is contributing to the growth of Weblogs. Just as Napster allowed me to find music I liked by going to a single person’s collection, Weblogs allow me to find all sorts of interesting information by going to a person’s weblog. If someone’s weblog appeals to me, the chances are that I’ll find their future posts and other parts of their site to appealing as well.

All this comes down to something that I’ve called the filtering effect of Weblogs. By this, I mean that webloggers with which I have things in common help me filter through all the available information and find the things that appeal to my tastes- because personal tastes are great filters.

I think this is one of the beauties of Weblogs - allowing like-minded people to use each others weblogs to filter through and focus on the subjects that interest them most.

Further, in terms of business Weblogs, businesses should think about their niche and how they are filtering information for their customers. By being a good filter for the niche, they can become a valuable part of their customer's learning and awareness.