Monday, October 30, 2006

A niche of millions

Clay Shirky, Web and computer industry pundit, flexes some neologistical chops:

I define a meganiche as a thin slice of the Web that nonetheless represents roughly a million users. The meganiche is something new, and it will have a lasting impact on online business and culture.

This would appear to be an oxymoronic concept, but I predict this one will stay, if perhaps not with as much currency as terms like the long tail. Shirky's example is a forum devoted to cell phones that gets 250 million page views a year for topics as obscure as modding the firmware in a cell phone, etc.

1 comment:

Eric Lippert said...

The philosopher Daniel Dennett uses the terms "Vast" and "Vanishing" to denote truly enormous numbers and truly tiny fractions, respectively. One of the interesting things about being Vast is that a Vanishing subset of a Vast set can itself be Vast.

Consider, for example, the set of all possible <100-character strings. That sucker is Vast. The subset of it which consists of grammatical, correctly-spelled fewer-than-100-character English sentences is also Vast, but is a Vanishingly small fraction of the original Vast set.