Industry Standard: A 1.0 Brand Hops On The 2.0 Train

Remember 10 years ago, when we were all using Yahoo? In between searches we were reading The Industry Standard so we could find out all about which <insert merch>.com company had just gotten $50 million in funding and celebrated by hosting a party with Carlos Santana performing the background music at cocktail hour. (I’m kidding, of course– the party I’m thinking of had Carlos as the main act.) And when 1.0 went down in flames and we all “took sabbatical” and “became consultants”, the Industry Standard went down with it.

Well, as they say, everything old is new again. The company that bought The Industry Standard’s assets is resurrecting the brand again with a firmly 2.0 twist. In addition to providing news analysis from Leading Minds there will be essentially a predictive market on stories, with people betting fake money on particular outcomes. The idea is very Wisdom Of The Crowds, which of course is one of the various latest rages. It’s an interesting idea, sort of like a niche Digg in a way, that adds community to news stories.

However, at some point it’s hard to separate predictions from mere opinions. About 2 months ago opinion had Rudy Guliani winning the Republican presidential nomination, and we saw how wise those crowds were. So I’m keeping my eye on the new Industry Standard; the first time a story about a party appears I’m cashing out to “work on a novel” and “do some independent consulting.”