It’s funny how something that seems at first to be nothing but the reemergence of opportunity can be the cause of so much anxiety. The Web 2.0 buzz that’s been going on since the conference (I discussed it in WTF Is 2.0? and in More On Web 2.0 recently) has been surprisingly divided between hype and fear of “Bubble 2.0”.
I think a repeat of the late 90’s is unlikely. If it were to happen, it’d be because venture capitalists had forgotten the very very expensive lessons they learned during the crash. Having spoken to a few of them recently, I most certainly don’t think they have – VCs are out looking for good companies with products to sell and customers to win, not merely a cool concept.
Even if we do see another frenzy of stupid investing, which I doubt, the web economy is in a different place now than it was then. I’ve been a happy E*Trade customer for approaching 10 years, I’ve been using Google every day for a couple of years, I buy a nontrivial amount of junk from Amazon, I use Ebay on occasion, etc… These companies, be they 1.0, 2.0, or even 3.1b2p6, are not going anywhere soon.