Twitter is definitely onto something, Dave Winer argues. It’s also trying to take on way too much and boil the ocean. If it continues down this path, the big boys will soon stomp it out of existence:
Fred Wilson in his famous answer compared Twitter to Google when it was a pre-revenue startup. A nice problem to have, for sure, but what if Twitter is more like Netscape than Google?
I was a web developer when Microsoft passed Netscape. They did it in a classic style, perfectly executed in every way to take advantage of every door Netscape left open…
When one of the big guys competes with Twitter, they will do everything Twitter does, compatibly, and they will also offer a firehose without restrictions, licenses or approval. Twitter will have to follow suit, but then it will be too late, they will be following in the market they created.
Much better to get out ahead of it, narrow the focus, welcome the competitors, and reserve for itself the position of the naming authority. It will be impossible to unseat them from this position if they play it right. They can of course continue to operate twitter.com, and with a fully open firehose a bigger competitor might not even find a way into their market. Either way, Twitter must find a defensible posture, they’ve definitely staked out too much territory, they’re spread too thin.
Read Dave’s full post here >
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