There is an interesting back-and-forth on Twitter right now, with Jeff Jarvis and Tim O’Brien (Editor of Sunday Business section of New York Times) going on about the link ‘economy’. (Remember this is a Twitter stream, so the latest post is at the top: you’ll need to read from the bottom up).
So, are links a ‘currency’? Is this an economic shift at the core, or are the economics secondary to the change in behavior?
Personally, I think that the transition is away from the Web of Pages (where we wandered around, or searched on Google to find things, and then we ‘went’ to those pages) to the Web of Flow (where bits of salient information find their way to us through social connections mediated by streaming applications). We always had links, in either case.
What we have now is a new and better paradigm for connectedness and information passing, and old media will have to struggle to catch up. And it will change economics of that marketplace, but the economic change is incidental, secondary. The primary change is social, societal, and on an individual basis, cognitive.