During the last decade, technology drastically changed our lives. It gave us the ease of communication but it stole our real lives. The more I observe people around me, and especially the younger generation, the deeper in shock I become. People are living in a fake reality inside their gadgets. When they meet with others or attend any kind of event, their attention is focused on the photos and posts they can share about it online. Everyone is trying to be cool on social networks, and post content just to get more likes and engagement. The whole world has become a Social Media content source.
Obviously I’m exaggerating. We are not quite there.Yet. But if you look at teens and kids, you will see that it’s just a matter of 10–15 years max. All the best-selling anti utopia books are becoming the new reality.
We don’t need a Big Brother from Orwell. We already have social media that reminds me of Huxley’s Brave New World. I’m an IT person. I’m deeply passionate about building good software. But even the best software is only a tool that makes life efficient and productive. Can you imagine yourself spending hours per week watching Google Maps? Or reading though descriptions of Airbnb hosts? You don’t have to, because the tools do the work for you.
We need more solutions like this. Software is built to allow people to live more fulfilling lives. Solutions that give us immediate information, save our time and connect us with real actions that can enrich us personally.
Why have all those financially and professionally skilled resources for Airbnb, Uber and Google Maps — but we don’t have them for every aspect of our lives? This reminds me of the stories about goods with short life cycles that stimulate more consumption. If all the information becomes too accessible, people will spend much less time staring into their gadgets. They will not have to go through tons of irrelevant content and will not see numerous ads. They will be able to actually DO more. But this is not what the IT world seems to want.
Why is this so bad for the biggest IT world players? They will lose their constant, captive audience which they need for paid advertising that lies at the core of their businesses. We need a revolution in the way we build our new IT business models. The reason Airbnb and Uber are successful is that they have a straightforward business model that puts a payment gateway between their service providers and consumers in order to collect their fees.
The point is that apart from “featured search”, “third-party ads” and “payment intermediates” there is another way of matchmaking platform monetisation. I believe that for many matchmaking platforms there are additional pains that need to be resolved. Visibility is the most critical one and it must always be free and highly efficient. This is what allows small businesses to evolve and increase their revenues. Trying to sell them visibility eventually leads to less activity and financial circulation.
Happy business owners can more easily become paying clients if you provide them with free visibility, along with paid services that boost their efficiency and brand quality. I deeply believe that our younger generation has much more potential than they currently show.
We need to bring them an attractive reality as an alternative to the virtual reality that they love so much. Like the one many of us had before all these gadgets and social media channels dominated the world … We need an IT revolution that provides immediate information, saves time and connects us with real actions that can enrich us personally.