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List Name largest (largest)
Purpose: What webs or e-businesses do you know of that claim to be the world's largest?
Question-poser : Chris Macrae, wcbn007@easnet.co.uk

What follows is loosely based on Profit Patterns, the book by
Slywotzky et al. They say that economy of scale advantage &
profitability used to be thought of in terms of share of a market
category. No longer. The "largest" which matters these days is the union
of 3 shares of mind : customers, employees, investors/owners. You can
start to list valuable reasons for each of these to consider the largest
as the first reference point; not that this is enough since if the largest
in mind doesn't quickly live up to the reality of its responsibility its
profit/goodwill peak will quickly slump. But a very interesting question
can be largest of what? - usually this what in the net age won't be a
product category. Look for example at how Amazon is aiming to be the
largest e-tailer in all sorts of products whose connection is simply
relevance to building the largest customer community on the web. It
turns out that 1:1 the technical stuff needed to support one product
category a la amazon is very similar to another category; the cost of
specialising in just one category is therefore likely to be dangerous to
your health if you expect to own all the e-tailing operations. Equally
the cost of customer awareness and contact can be much more economical
when shared across products.

Does this start off any train of thoughts in your mind? Does it help to clarify why logging up types of "largest" in this topica community could be very important work to open source?

Other reasons for the largest question include:

1) I'm fascinated in any lessons on knowledge-organisation (by definition there's a lot to learn on what "largest" get right and wrong )
2) Again I'm interested in how the power of being largest is being leveraged both in good strategic senses (eg new communities?) or defensive modes
3) Some new research shows that the predominant US econsumer is currently driven by convenience - so when is largest convenient/inconvenient in web form is worthy of research

Thanks for participating, Chris Macrae, wcbn007@easynet.co.uk
PS Some examples of largest:
www.amazon.com has the largest selection of books ever assembled by a retailer; www.nordstromshoes.com similarly claims to be the world's largest shoe shop; www.webgrrls.com may well be the largest ecommunity assembled from scratch; www.yahoo.com is the world's largest portal exchange...

Footnote on profit pattern perspective:

Website URL: http://www.brandknowledge.com
List Type: Unmoderated discussion
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Created: May 02, 2000
Owner: Chris Macrae
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