Web2.0 and beyond , productive, unproductive or destructive ?

I have had a great week. I have been an investigative reporter, spotting such anomalies as gravel for the train tracks in B&Q packaging and misleading statistics on the train (see posts below). I have also been playing with some fantastic technology. The wonderful augmented reality browser for smartphones called Layer. I sat through a great presentation of a new consultant for hire/resource type company called MinuteBox which I thought was a truly great idea, I have just finished playing with Lockerz , what a great idea !

Having done all of this, I lay in the bath and began to feel slightly concerned. Because not only have I not really been very productive (whilst playing with these new found ideas), but I began wondering how productive some of the great Internet start-ups really are ? It reminded me of a paper I read some time ago by the economist Buamol, who looked through history and found that there were really three types of entrepreneur in any given society. One who is productive, the output of his efforts contribute to society, one who is unproductive - outputs do not contribute and yet another who is destructive (like a criminal) - outputs harm society.

Many of the great ideas that our VC friends are investing in, seem like great ideas - no question. And I am sure there is money to be made. The question however is, how many of these ideas can be termed productive entrepreneurship ... as a society we must be striving to produce and as investors we should be weary of the profit maxim without production ...

I guess this is real Bath-tub economics !


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