The Long Tail wags again

Thanks to John Battelle, I discovered a very interesting article by Joe Kraus, the original president of Excite, on the Long Tail

He gives us the interesting stat that..

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.. while the top 10 searches were thousands of times more popular than the average search, these top-10 searches represented only 3% of our total volume. 97% of our traffic came from the “long tail” – queries asked a little over once a day.

and tongue in cheek, Kraus confesses

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You know the real reason Excite went out of business? We couldn’t figure out how to make money from 97% of our traffic. We couldn’t figure out how to make money from the long tail – from those queries asked only once a day.
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Overture figured it out, Google perfected it and we all know what happened from there. .... It was a special kind of marketplace where small advertisers could reach small markets efficiently.
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Google, eBay, Amazon, Rhapsody, Netflix, iTunes. What do they all have in common? They all work the long tail and they’re all radically changing the dynamics of their more traditional businesses.

And now Joe Kraus is trying to muscle in on the long tail with his company Jotspot an enterprise level Wiki.

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JotSpot is a company that is building a platform to make it easy and affordable to build long-tail software applications.