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January 09, 2005

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» The Long Tail from What Is Flig?

If you're not reading The Long Tail blog, by Chris Anderson, you should be. Chris recently opened up a contest to create definitions and slogans for the concept of the Lon... [Read More]

» More Long Tails - Iraq elections "newswire" blog from nadya's basket
The blogosphere is a beautiful thing. Want to stay up-to-date on what's happening with the Iraq elections? There's a blog that's only a few weeks old that's dedicated just to that. By a tech engineer in North Carolina, Iraq Elections [Read More]

» Long-tail business from Below Belief
See VentureBlog for a fascinating discussion on the Internet and the "death of the 80/20 rule". It's an idea which is gathering momentum as people everywhere realise that since the Internet reduces transaction and sales costs to virtually nothing that... [Read More]

» The ultimate LongTail from CTG info-napsterizer
Language -- as illustrated graphically by WORDCOUNT. Thanks to eleganthack. [Read More]

» Personalization, The Long Tail, And The Charge Against The Customer Monoculture from The Social Customer Manifesto
I've always believed the Long Tail is real (even before the concept had a trendy name and a piece in Wired). Maybe it's some sort of subconscious iconoclasm on my part; perhaps it is the desire to not fit into [Read More]

» On the Trail of the Long Tail from Yahoo! Search blog
Ideas come and ideas go. Sometimes they blaze hot and move fast through media spaces like print, television, movies, and pop music. Or they burst onto the Internet and travel the gossip hotline of the blogosphere. When they acquire an... [Read More]

» On the Trail of the Long Tail from Yahoo! Search blog
Ideas come and ideas go. Sometimes they blaze hot and move fast through media spaces like print, television, movies, and pop music. Or they burst onto the Internet and travel the gossip hotline of the blogosphere. When they acquire an... [Read More]

» Cómo definir la Larga Cola from Microsiervos
En On the Trail of the Long Tail, un artículo publicado en el blog corporativo Yahoo Search Blog se hace un buen repaso al fenómeno social y de mercado de la Larga Cola, que ya hemos comentado varias veces por... [Read More]

» Cómo definir la Larga Cola from Microsiervos
En On the Trail of the Long Tail, un artículo publicado en el blog corporativo Yahoo Search Blog se hace un buen repaso al fenómeno social y de mercado de la Larga Cola, que ya hemos comentado varias veces por... [Read More]

» La superdistribution from Le Blog d'Alexander
Voilà un sujet vraiment brûlant puisque cela fait bien un an que je m'intéresse à la question et que je crois qu'il n'y a pas eu une semaine sans une annonce directe ou indirecte sur le sujet. Pour les néophytes, [Read More]

» Le reality show est de retour from Le Blog d'Alexander
Il paraît que chez M-Distrib, on fait de la distribution grand public de contenus multimédias [Read More]

» Charles on Google and Weblogs from Josh's Log
Charles has a great post. Read it. The web does not exist to serve Google. The web should not stay... [Read More]

» Bmw levaquin amoxicillin cephalexin from Zyprexa neurontin wellbutrin Godzik Blog
Free search: amoxicillin, levaquin, glucophage, lanoxin, wellbutrin, neurontin, zyprexa, bmw... [Read More]

» The Long Tail:长尾理论 from 王天
一、 [Read More]

» The Long Tail (长尾)-- 颠覆20/80 法则 from 未知都是已知的
从东邪那里最早注意到这个词。 什么是长尾(The Long Tail)? 目前没有准确的定义。相似的说法有: “长尾”实际上是统计学中Power Laws和帕累托(Pareto)分布特征的一个口语化表达。 "The Long Tail is the realization that the sum of many small markets is worth as much, if not more, than a few large markets." --Jason Foster “The Lo... [Read More]

» Flow Of Time from Long
Here's a bit more about the long tail by Bnoopy.... [Read More]

Comments

Jim Treacher

I'm the third one from the left. You can tell by the dimples. Also the dimples in the face.

Noah Brier

I vote for number one (enough small markets make a big market). I like the fact that it doesn't reference sellable goods, but instead mentions markets. In my mind the long tail extends well beyond just products.

Josh Petersen

I use to work at Amazon.com on the personalization features that fuel the long tail. Here's how I described the long tail to a marketing guy who didn't get it (and thought we should focus more on bestsellers): "We sold more books today that didn't sell at all yesterday than we sold today of all the books that did sell yesterday."

We are building a new long tail of the internet's aspirations at http://www.43things.com

Let me know what you think.

Stephen Balbach

Just put up an initial Wikipedia article called "The Long Tail"

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Long_Tail

It borrows from Bob Bakers definition.

BillSaysThis

Reading your blog I am reminded of the 1983 G. Harry Stine (under the pen name Lee Correy) SF novel Manna. While it's still in print (Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/0879978961/qid=1105466355/sr=1-21/ref=sr_1_21/102-5364052-8103306?v=glance&s=books, no referrer code), the only other useful web mention I found of it was a three year old blog entry of mine (http://www.billsaysthis.com/blog/blogarch.phtml?archdate=2001_12_09_blog_archive.phtml#7781381). Stine died in 1997 so no surprise he doesn't have a personal site, but I recommend the book highly.

David Locke

There is never a final definition. Concepts compete. The competition changes the words.

James Governor

I am beginning to call it the End of Shelf life....

Slippery Pete

To me, the long tail where niche product (or whatever) lives...as opposed to a merely customized or personalized mass market product. Some fuss has been made of the idea of mass customization over the past few years, but using technology to serve niche needs goes beyond customization.

Helen Hockney

The Problem of finding a cocktail party definition to The Long Tail is the term you are trying to define in the first place.
1)The Long Tail phenomenon, as you so brilliantly articulate it in your Wired piece, is not a noun, not a description of a static thing or event, but rather a process. The long tail itself is merely a definition, or rather a description of the part of a graph depicting the mathematical formulation of the laws of scarcity – or of Pareto’s principle. But what you are describing in your writing is the process, enabled by a new technology, of accessing that long tail in a way not possible before. By referring to it as merely The Long Tail, you are grasping for that Editor’s attempt to Headline. And rightly so. We need a quick way to refer to the 5 pages you outlines in WIRED, and certainly we need a title for your much anticipated book. But the headline needs to have a VERB added to it. Because it’s a process, not a principle like the power curve.

So, pick your verb: my favorite is, "Mining". Mining the Long Tail. I like the imagery. One mines for diamonds, treasures, data...etc..

But other verbs may do — accessing, reaching, spotlighting, ..

If you notice in the google slide you posted, it says Serving the Long Tail. The verb was necessary. It is necessary in defining your concept of it as well.

Once you’ve added that verb, a definition becomes much easier, and many of the ones already in your list work fine. For example, Mining the Long Tail is the process by which,____ and then fill in the rest of the definitions on your finalist list.

Mining The Long Tail is the process by which,
-- the sum of many small markets is worth as much, if not more, than a few large markets." --Jason Foster
-- the obscure becomes ubiquitous.”-- Eric Akawie
-- the 80% of stuff that didn't used to be worth selling.”--Greg
-- products that were once considered fringe, underground or independent now collectively make up a market share that rivals the bestsellers and blockbusters." --Bob Baker

My own submission for the new title: Mining the Long Tail is the process, via a new technology, of transforming the physical limitations of current selling and distribution systems so that very small niche products, that previously fell into the bottom 80% of the power distribution curve, can now profitably find their market.

Then, depending on which cocktail party it is, If the person at the cocktail party asks “what is the power distribution curve?”, you can explain that. And that would be the classic definition of the long tail, or Pareto’s principle.

2) The Long Tail itself, even as it is defined by Pareto, is not a fixed event. The graph depicting the 20/80 power law is merely a picture of a distribution in a given point in time. But the elements that make up the curve are never the same at any moment. Even before the internet and digital technology, obscure authors could suddenly find a better agent, big name artists could suddenly fall out of favor, trends and natural events changed demand, and hoola hoops or face masks suddenly went from one end of the curve to the other overnight. The new technology is changing the dynamics, momentum, size of that process and as you pointed out, possibly the actual ratio of the power law itself. But a dynamic process is what you’re defining, not a fixed graph. Thus the verb in your title is essential from this perspective as well.

PuReWebDev

I've been using longtail in targeting keywords for my niche. great post.

thanks,
PuReWebDev

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Tidbits

The Long Tail by Chris Anderson

Notes and sources for the book

FREE was available in all digital forms--ebook, web book, and audiobook--for free shortly after the hardcover was published on July 7th. The ebook and web book were free for a limited time and limited to certain geographic regions as determined by each national publisher; the unabridged MP3 audiobook (get zip file here) will remain free forever, available in all regions.

Order the hardcover now!