Thursday, May 29, 2008

A must read on hacking the industrial economy from our favorite provocateur.

Umair brings a big smile with this HBR post on hacking. Great stuff. Go read it. And think about what you'd like to hack. Here's just a taste:

The problem is that there’s a massive reversal taking place in today’s economy. While today’s revolutionaries are losing sight of these principles, ironically, its industrial-era corpocracies who are learning to use them to rethink their DNA.

The shift is slow, cautious, and often-times well-hidden. But it’s very real. P&G’s Connect & Develop program is just a kind of massive recursive hack – a hack to put hacker principles into the DNA of a giant, evil corporation. When Starbucks stops talking, and starts listening – it’s just another way to bring hacker principles inside, and drive the lameness orthodox strategy created out.

Conversely, ask yourself the reverse: what is Facebook hacking? Is it making sucky things better, is it subverting authority, is it deeply idealistic? Not really - perhaps because it's too busy playing cheesy domination games. What did Yahoo hack? Nothing – it was too busy trying to protect a rotten, decaying media value chain.

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