Technology that empowers individuals disrupts the status quo. The invention of the electric guitar in the 1950s enabled one person to make more noise than a whole orchestra and changed the music business forever. It was incredibly democratizing. By the 1960s anyone could afford an electric guitar and four middle class youths from Liverpool with no formal music education wrote songs, released albums, and sold more records in one day than all the big bands combined ever sold in a year. Within a couple years they even formed their own record company. The music business was officially open to millions of average people for the first time in history. Without electric guitars no one outside of Liverpool, England would ever have heard of John, Paul, George, and Ringo.
As the cloud and social tech evolve, the music industry is undergoing another massive disruption at the hands of technology. All music services have social embedded in their architecture now. Your playlist is contributed via social tech back to a vast collection of playlists in the cloud resulting in a major transformation in the way people are exposed to and consume new music. And, you no longer need to go to a big screen tribute to see John Lennon sing “Power To The People, Right On.” Fire up your hologram, drop him onto a music track and make your own personal concert. Power to the person.
The empowerment of individuals will eventually disrupt every business. The established order at major news networks is experiencing this now. News and program anchors are no longer dependent on the vast infrastructure and capital investment of “the man.” Using the cloud and social tech individuals can operate their own network. And they’re doing it. And making big bucks.
The secret of the cloud is that it makes social available to individuals all over the planet and just like the Beatles—there’s no degree required. The cloud is officially open to billions. Today 953 million people own a cloud-attached smartphone and that makes each of them a potential Beatle.
Are smartphones the electric guitars of the 21st century?
An interesting flip chart on the current state…