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Internet Gold Rush

Posted by James M. Helms on December 19, 2007

I recently watched a program on the California Gold Rush. It was a pretty long drawn out documentary but I couldn’t reach the remote and I didn’t seem to have any real good reasons to get up, so I watched the program. Back in 1849 (oh, the 49ers I get it), gold was thick and easily accessible, people could basically make their fortune in one day because of the untouched waterways that held the sought after metal. Over time word got around that there were riches to be made and people poured into California seeking their fortune. It didn’t take very long before most of the profitable locations were spoken for. Over time workers entering the gold fields banded together for both protection and increased efficiency.
I couldn’t help but immediately draw a likeness to the “internet rush” and a lot of the situations we seemed to be faced with. However, there are just as many differences as there are simularities. Have we reached a point with the internet where all of the profitable spots are taken? Is the internet saturated with big business and does that big business limit small business? I think that in many ways it seems to be so. Unlike the gold rush there is still “gold in them thar hills”. There are many internet startups today and they constantly challenge larger businesses to adapt their practices. There really is endless opportunity and a surplus of realestate available today, it just isn’t on the surface. We don’t have shovels, picks, pans, sluices, and rocker boxes today but we do have tools. What tools do you think are most effective today on the internet? What advantages do small businesses have over large businesses? Your thoughts would be greatly appreciated.

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