In 2004, tech guru Chris Anderson talked at TED about The Long Tail, the ability of the Internet to provide access to the most obscure information, books, music etc because there’s enough people worldwide to make this viable. From Amazon to Netflix to Pandora, the Internet enabled people to find just the thing they are looking for regardless of how off the beaten path it was. Google and other search engines have made it even easier to find the tiniest factoid, quote, statistic, meme or video. Let’s not even talk about viral…let’s talk about the lone reader, writer, thinker, blogger finding just what they need to keep on thinking, writing and blogging.
Why on earth am I blogging about The Long Tail, you are probably wondering at this point. It’s because I’ve been pleasantly flummoxed by the long life of some of my own obscure posts. I don’t know how people find me but my posts about Vitamix v. KitchenAid, my rave about Moleskine, my rant about Lululemon‘s butt-enhancing style have continued to bring strangers knocking at my door (actually, they don’t have to knock considering that the Internet is open always.).
Today, the news is filled with arguments about SOPA (Stop Online Piracy Act) and Protect IP Act which are legislation before Congress. All the major internet providers are aflutter over the implications of imposing any regulation on what has been a Wild West Show until now. I’m not sure where I fall on the spectrum since there’s a whole lot of Internet crud out there….but I’m inclined to support the freedom that has enabled Long Tail. As long as the Internet is free, strangers will continue find my posts. And I’m liking that just fine.