Alexander van Elsas compiled an excellent list of 10 reasons why Google just reinvented online communication. You should read that blog post now, if you haven’t already!
I do agree that Google does Wave the right way – it’s all about openness, Alexander’s points 2 and 3 should make most critical users and developers happy.
But then Google still has the business advantage of having all aggregated data in their silo’s – they will be the exclusive owner of virtually all communication data in the world. This gives them enormous business advantages in terms of finding out what people are discussing, right now. All this can be put in perspective with data mining of all previous communication. The logical exploitation is ever more targeted advertising (adding location, local time, mood, communication partners and such to the expression). But being able to watch real time trends in high resolution, fine grained up to the user level in the context of their social network will likely enable entirely new business models, which we can not even imagine right now.
Does this matter for the individual user?
Maybe, privacy is potentially at risk even more than it is now. Whatever will happen, great power comes with great responsibility and the slogan “do not evil” applies more than ever before.
At the same time I’m really excited to see this happen and will most likely join Wave as soon as it becomes available.
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