2001: When the Internet Was, Um, Over?


It Ain’t Over Until It’s Over: Thus far, historical past has proved Mr. Frank half-correct. The Dow Jones index, which had peaked round 17,000 on the top of the ’90s increase, has merely handed 26,000, not 36,000. However the dot-coms, as you might need seen, didn’t precisely vanish.

That previous apple of Mr. Blodget’s eye, Amazon, which lately turned the nation’s second trillion greenback firm, with a inventory worth greater than 4 instances Mr. Blodget’s once-risible $400 worth goal. Mr. Blodget himself went on to turn into a tech mogul, as a founding father of the net information web site Enterprise Insider (Mr. Wolff, in the meantime, didn’t precisely disappear both: his explosive ebook “Hearth and Fury: Contained in the Trump White Home,” turned a finest vendor earlier this 12 months).

However with the knowledge of hindsight, it’s clear that 2001 was not the tip of web tradition, however moderately, the tip of the start of web tradition. At the moment’s younger tech moguls — like Fb’s $60 billion man, Mark Zuckerberg — aren’t solely among the many richest folks on the earth, they’re additionally Beyoncé-level stars within the eyes of the starry-eyed postgraduates who flock to tech’s promised land, hoping, just like the characters in HBO’s “Silicon Valley,” to carve out their slice of the longer term.

Hindsight Is 20/20: In equity to Mr. Schwartz, he hinted that tech would possibly come roaring again, larger than ever, in 2001. “The dot-commer,” he wrote, “seen in the present day as a rip-off artist,” is perhaps reborn, “smarter and harder, as a result of he represents optimism itself.”

When contacted final week concerning the story, he thanked me for the chance to remain humble, however added: “Because the story predicted, a brand new technology of firms has arisen and adjusted the world since that story ran: It contains Fb, Twitter, Uber and Theranos.” He continued, “if there’s a lesson in taking a brand new take a look at this previous story, it needs to be to by no means wager in opposition to greed, and by no means wager on a cultural shift that requires tech firms to develop a conscience.”


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