Organic Taste Makers and Marketing Costs

As far back as, gasp, 2005 and 2006, some had predicted the influence of the New Media Tastemakers. John Borland of CNET wrote about the organic quality of the trend:

Like the Web itself, the impact of such grassroots opinions has grown geometrically to change the way hits are made in movies, music and television. Their significance goes far beyond the realm of entertainment, fundamentally recasting the way opinions are shaped in a society whose sensibilities have been saturated by mass-media campaigns for generations.

The undeniable influence of these organic taste makers has been made possible by the rise of blogs, tags, collaborative bookmarks and other so-called social technologies that are fulfilling some of the utopian objectives espoused in the early days of the Internet, when it was hoped that the Web would empower the individual and dismantle communication barriers across the globe. Many of those altruistic goals were vastly overshadowed by mass commercialization. But, in the years since the dot-com meltdown, they’ve been resurrected with a new generation of digerati who are developing and exploiting the social aspects of the medium.