He points to various example of himself and others he knows making a lot of money from what would be considered “Web 1.0” types of websites. Essentially content or service websites run by just one person or a couple of people. That’s great, but it’s really not anything to base a “Web 2.0 has it wrong” argument upon. There are millions of Web 1.0 sites that have failed, and there are also Web 2.0 sites that have done exactly what Markus is suggesting people do. Didn’t Digg revolutionize technology news? Didn’t Flickr revolutionize photo sharing? Didn’t they start with small teams and make money? This recent article in InformationWeek profiles some “accidental” Web 2.0 entrepreneurs who basically did what Markus is describing.
Regardless, I get what Markus is saying that there are a lot of Web 2.0 sites getting a lot of hype that will never make as much money as Markus is making with his Web 1.0 dating site. Heck, I just sold a Web 1.0 content site for more money than a lot of well-hyped Web 2.0 companies may ever profit. And I see the amount of money a lot of Web 1.0 sites are making on the Right Media Exchange, and I know they are one-person companies in industries like guitar tabs and game cheat codes. So, Markus is right that you don’t need AJAX, an A-list team, and a mentioning on TechCrunch in order to make a good living on the web.
Markus never really mentions what he thinks is wrong about the way Web 2.0 entrepreneurs are thinking, but I’m guessing he’s trying to say that they focus on fancy technologies, the tech/geek market, and they don’t really make much money.
His argument is that there is money to be made and success to be had by simplifying and shrinking markets like he did for dating, and essentially “revolutionizing” an industry. I’d argue that he didn’t really revolutionize dating on the web, but he definitely created success for himself and his site.