Author Archive: Sangeet Paul Choudary

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How Google’s crawlers, Uber’s drivers and Instagram’s selfies power the platform economy

How Google’s crawlers, Uber’s drivers and Instagram’s selfies power the platform economy

| February 5, 2014 | 19 Comments

This article is #4 in an ongoing series on the design of platform business models.  What do Google’s crawlers, Uber’s drivers and Instagram’s selfie-clickers have in common? Or for that matter Elance’s freelancers, Dribbble’s designers and Twitter’s tweeters.  In a world of platforms, they create the fuel needed to facilitate economic and social exchanges that [...]

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Uber, Etsy and the internet of everybody: A visual guide to networked businesses

Uber, Etsy and the internet of everybody: A visual guide to networked businesses

| January 23, 2014 | 14 Comments

This post is part of an ongoing series on the fundamentals of Platform Thinking.    The natural purpose of a network is to connect. Fax machines, telephone networks, stock exchanges and credit card networks have done exactly that . With the internet, we now have a universal network that connects everyone with everyone (well, almost). [...]

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The Three Design Elements for Designing Platforms

The Three Design Elements for Designing Platforms

| January 17, 2014 | 12 Comments

This article is #2 in an ongoing series on Platform Thinking.  What does the traditional world of manufacturing have in common with the way networked platforms work? How can a basic understanding of factory design help us change the way we think about designing internet platforms, marketplaces and social networks? I’ve written previously about the distinction [...]

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Platform Thinking Roundup: The best articles of 2013

Platform Thinking Roundup: The best articles of 2013

| December 28, 2013 | 5 Comments

2013 started with JP Rangaswami declaring it the year of platforms. It’s ending with a piece I wrote for WIRED titled “Platforms are eating the world”. A lot has happened in between. We saw the proverbial final nails in the coffin of an industry that has been tellingly transformed by platform business models with Nokia [...]

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Disruption, Failure and Metrics: Explaining Platform Thinking

Disruption, Failure and Metrics: Explaining Platform Thinking

| December 9, 2013 | 13 Comments

Excerpts from an interview with YourStory.com earlier this year. The original interview is available here. Also, Part 1 is available here. Disruption: What advice would you give to startups and entrepreneurs starting a business today? How can they identify industries that are ripe for disruption? The best way to identify an industry for disruption is [...]

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The Creator Web: The Dribbblisation of work platforms

The Creator Web: The Dribbblisation of work platforms

| November 26, 2013 | 9 Comments

Note: This article first appeared in Fast Company. I am pleased to have co-authored with TED Books Author Damon Brown.  The Internet has powered the rise of a new creative class. Global reach, real-time feedback, and reputation building have redefined the creator. Today, the Instagram-wielding teen is as much a member of this burgeoning creative class [...]

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Owning The Transaction – Why Marketplaces Need To Think Like SAAS Businesses.

Owning The Transaction – Why Marketplaces Need To Think Like SAAS Businesses.

| November 12, 2013 | 13 Comments

Marketplaces are difficult businesses to get off the ground. A marketplace without buyers cannot attract sellers and vice versa. In fact, the infamy of this proverbial chicken and egg problem detracts entrepreneurs from the challenges that a marketplace presents after it has successfully gained adoption and is successfully matching buyers with sellers. After all, marketplaces for [...]

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The Waze-ification of the Physical World

The Waze-ification of the Physical World

| October 29, 2013 | 3 Comments

This article first appeared on Harvard Business Review. I’m delighted to have co-authored this with Mark Bonchek.  We are moving from a world in which physical products are separate to one in which they are connected.  Computers were just the beginning.  Appliances and engines now send alerts when they need to be serviced.  Cameras upload [...]

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The Rise of the Platform: A seismic shift in business models

The Rise of the Platform: A seismic shift in business models

| October 19, 2013 | 24 Comments

Note: A variation of this article appeared as an op-ed on The Wall Street Journal’s MarketWatch. This was co-authored with Geoffrey Parker (@g2parker, Tulane Univ.) and Marshall Van Alstyne (@infoecon, Boston Univ.). They currently serve as research scientists at the MIT Sloan School of Management.   Nokia just sold to Microsoft. Blackberry announced that it is considering putting [...]

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Trolls, Vandalism and Report Abuse: A Framework for Online Community Management

Trolls, Vandalism and Report Abuse: A Framework for Online Community Management

| October 12, 2013 | 1 Comments

Online platforms work on principles similar to offline communities. The onset of crime and vandalism in a community can lead to large-scale abandonment. The same applies to online communities and marketplaces, especially as they grow in size. Network effects make a community more valuable as it scales. However, the onset of vandalism could make network effects work [...]

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