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Rating: 3.9 / 5.0 (155 votes)

Released: 2000-01-06

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The Cluetrain Manifesto by David Weinberger

Description

The Cluetrain Manifesto burst onto the scene in March 1999, with ninety-five theses nailed up on the Web. Within days, www.cluetrain.com had ignited a vibrant global conversation challenging sacred corporate assumptions about the very nature of business in a digital world. The Wall Street Journal called it “absolutely brilliant.” Soon, executives from Fortune 500 companies everywhere were lining up to sign-on to the Manifesto. This is the book that delivers on the buzz. The Cluetrain Manifesto is a wake-up call that says business as usual is gone forever. Through the Internet, people are discovering and inventing new ways to share relevant knowledge with blinding speed. As a direct result, markets are getting smarter—and getting smarter faster than most companies. Today’s markets are conversations. Their members communicate in language that is natural, open, honest, direct, funny, and often shocking. Companies that aren’t listening to these exchanges are missing a dire warning. Companies that aren’t engaging in them are missing an unprecedented opportunity. The Cluetrain Manifesto is the culmination of this very real phenomenon. It shares powerful, firsthand experiences describing how Internet business differs radically from the corporate status quo. The fact is that employees are getting hyperlinked even as markets are. Companies need to listen carefully to both. Forget business as usual, The Cluetrain Manifesto marks the dawn of something bigger: Markets are becoming better informed, smarter, and more demanding of qualities missing from most business organizations These networked markets are conversations in which customers are intelligent human beings, not faceless demographic sectors Today, the organizational chart is hyperlinked, not hierarchical. Respect for hands-on knowledge wins over respect for abstract authority Corporations must transform themselves into organizations that establish a genuine culture with a perspective, a personality, and a point of view Linking conversations inside the company to conversations in the marketplace will create enormous new value for companies that are clued-in.

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Editorial Review

How would you classify a book that begins with the salutation, “People of Earth…”? While the captains of industry might dismiss it as mere science fiction, The Cluetrain Manifesto is definitely of this day and age. Aiming squarely at the solar plexus of corporate America, authors Christopher Locke, Rick Levine, Doc Searls, and David Weinberger show how the Internet is turning business upside down. They proclaim that, thanks to conversations taking place on Web sites and message boards, and in e-mail and chat rooms, employees and customers alike have found voices that undermine the traditional command-and-control hierarchy that organizes most corporate marketing groups. “Markets are conversations,” the authors write, and those conversations are “getting smarter faster than most companies.” In their view, the lowly customer service rep wields far more power and influence in today's marketplace than the well-oiled front office PR machine.

The Cluetrain Manifesto began as a Web site (www.cluetrain.com) in 1999 when the authors, who have worked variously at IBM, Sun Microsystems, the Linux Journal, and NPR, posted 95 theses that pronounced what they felt was the new reality of the networked marketplace. For example, thesis no. 2: “Markets consist of human beings, not demographic sectors”; thesis no. 20: “Companies need to realize their markets are often laughing. At them”; thesis no. 62: “Markets do not want to talk to flacks and hucksters. They want to participate in the conversations going on behind the corporate firewall”; thesis no. 74: “We are immune to advertising. Just forget it.” The book enlarges on these themes through seven essays filled with dozens of stories and observations about how business gets done in America and how the Internet will change it all. While Cluetrain will strike many as loud and over the top, the message itself remains quite relevant and unique. This book is for anyone interested in the Internet and e-commerce, and is especially important for those businesses struggling to navigate the topography of the wired marketplace. All aboard! –Harry C. Edwards

Book Details

Author: David Weinberger Publisher: Basic Books Binding: Hardcover Language: English Pages: 224

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