I was at a lunch the other day and we were talking about certain online properties and whether people would miss them if they suddently disappeared off the face of the earth.
It stemmed from me making a comment that online there are, effectively, too many versions of the same product in numerous areas. Do we need 112 weather sites? Probably not. Do we need 400 sites that have sports scores? Absolutely not.
I am of the belief a slimming down of most publishers offerings would be beneficial to all involved - the user, the publisher and their advertisers.
I noticed this has been a recurring theme on the Brand Autopsy blog - http://brandautopsy.typepad.com/brandautopsy/2008/05/would-you-mis-1.html
So ... what are those web sites/areas that if they vanished, users would quite easily get the same experience elsewhere?
I can only speak for myself - so what are the five sites I would miss if I woke up tomorrow and they were gone ...
I encourage you to add your own comments. Then each week we'll go through a variety of online offerings and ask the question 'Would you miss [x]?'
My 5 essentials
1. Google. It organises information. Keeps me connected. Without the GOOG I'd feel helpless. Search, maps, video, images ... handy for work and home.
2. MSN Messenger. I use it for work, play, transferring files, talking to friends ... it is a huge time saver for me and it's been a daily staple for 10 years.
3. Techcrunch. Keeps me updated on my profession. I would miss a lot if it disappeared.
4. ebay. Has revolutionised selling and buying. I am comfortable with the interface. I have picked up heaps of cool things from there. I love how it empowers both buyers and sellers.
5. Trip Advisor. Before this travel was a mess online. Another great example of shared knowledged through an engaged community.