February 22, 2009

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Control matters less, trust matters more: a new ecosystem in the making Image by gleonhard via Flickr I am continuously working on my new book "The End of Control", even though I have lately been wondering quite a bit about whether it still makes sense to publish a dead-tree version of a non-fiction epic these days - I may yet decide to remain entirely in the realm of bits and bytes. Stay tuned. Or better yet, tell me what you want! In any case, a big part of "The End of Control" is about how, all around us, Control is declining in importance (as well as in feasibility!), and our emphasis is gradually shifting to Trust. Not to become too Obama-ish here but I have observed this trend pretty much in all sectors that I work in, from media & content to travel to telecom, and it is an amazing change. And a real challenge. So, rather than trying to control what people do with a service or product they get from a company, many businesses are now starting to focus on earning, keeping and expanding the users' trust in what they do and how they do it, so that at the right time their users will indeed make the choice to pay them. Because that is pretty much what it comes down to, now: people make implicit (bundled) and explicit (i.e. voluntary) choices to pay for what we offer them. This is especially true for content, software, media and entertainment, of course - given that many of those goods are already digital and thereby payment can often be avoided if you so wish. Examples for how trust is starting to replace control abound - here are a few: Twitter users make the choice to follow me (hey... don't ask me why), and now I have to constantly earn their attention with...

Gerd Leonhard

Keynote Speaker, Think-Tank Leader, Futurist, Author & Strategist, Idea Curator, some say Iconoclast | Heretic, CEO TheFuturesAgency, Visiting Prof FDC Brazil, Green Futurist

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