Wednesday, October 26, 2005

The Long Tail

Chris Anderson, editor in chief of Wired mag, has a blog-about-to-become-a-book about what he calls the Long Tail phenomenon. If you haven't heard of this concept, the idea is that the web, unlike brick-and-mortar stores cobbled by expensive storage space, makes such a wide range of products available that even if only a few people are ever interested enough to buy them, the seller can still turn a profit. Examples include the DVDs that NetFlix has but Hollywood Video won't stock ("We're sorry, sir, but we don't have the unrated version of Bad Santa because we are a family video store") and the thousands of niche market Lego kits only available online.

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