90.9 WBUR - Boston's NPR news station
Top Stories:
PLEDGE NOW
‘The End Of Big’

The end of big: does technology spell the end of big companies, big institutions, big politics? And is David the new Goliath?

Nicco Mele

Nicco Mele (Joshua D. Wachs, Busy Brain Studios)

The Internet has built a reputation as the “great leveler.”  The little guy doesn’t need a printing press to have a voice any more.  He, she’s got the web.

Sometimes that looks awesome – in Tahrir Square when the web seems to be empowering thousands of ordinary folks to change the world.  Sometimes it looks bad – like yesterday when one hack in AP’s Twitter account sent things spiraling on fake news about the White House.

My guest today says get used to it.  Good and bad, it’s new times.

This hour, On Point:  the “end of big,” and David as the new Goliath.

- Tom Ashbrook

Guest

Nicco Mele, author of “The End of Big: How the Internet Makes David the New Goliath.” Lecturer in public policy at the Harvard Kennedy School. Internet operations director for Governor Howard Dean’s 2004 presidential campaign. Founder of EchoDitto, a leading internet strategy consulting company. (@nicco)

From Tom’s Reading List

Boston Globe: Nicco Mele on how technology radically changes everything — “Big things that are ending include big newspapers, big universities, big political parties, big armies, big entertainment companies, big government, and big manufacturing. It’s the DECLINE OF POWER of these big things.”

Nieman Journalism Lab: The end of big (media): When news orgs move from brands to platforms for talent — “The data behind Pew’s State of the News Media 2013 are the latest terrifying signs of the decline of the news industry. With three of America’s most esteemed papers for sale — The Boston Globe, the Chicago Tribune, and the Los Angeles Times — it’s time for a reboot to the fundamental business model for news. News revenue remains overwhelmingly dependent upon advertising, but the radical connectivity of the Internet has greatly diminished both the scale of newspapers’ reach as well as the value of advertising.”

National Journal: The End of Government as We Know It — “In a must-read for political and policy junkies as well as futurists, Mele argues that the Democratic and Republican parties must urgently embrace the bottom-up ethos of radical connectivity — or perish. He also says arguments over the size of government are outdated, because the real question is how we redefine governing for the digital age.”

Please follow our community rules when engaging in comment discussion on this site.
ONPOINT
TODAY
Dec 19, 2014
Alan Gross, waves as he and his wife Judy leave following his statement at his lawyer's office in Washington, Wednesday, Dec. 17, 2014. Gross was released from Cuba after 5 years in a Cuban prison. (AP)

Cuba reset. Russia’s rubble troubles. School massacre in Pakistan. Jeb explores 2016. Our weekly news roundtable goes behind the headlines.

Dec 19, 2014
Soledad, and from left, Nina Pastori, and Lila Downs perform on stage at the Latin Recording Academy Person of the Year Tribute honoring Joan Manuel Serrat at the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino on Wednesday, Nov. 19, 2014, in Las Vegas. (AP)

From crossover hits to hip-hop to soul, we look at a big year in the wide world of Latin music.

RECENT
SHOWS
Dec 18, 2014
A poster for the movie "The Interview" is carried away by a worker after being pulled from a display case at a Carmike Cinemas movie theater, Wednesday, Dec. 17, 2014, in Atlanta. (AP)

A big Sony hack gets weirder and wider. And Hollywood and Homeland Security are on edge.

 
Dec 18, 2014
This handout photo from the Twitter account of Sen. Jeff Flake, R-Ariz. shows Alan Gross arriving at Andrews Air Force Base, Md., Wednesday, Dec. 17, 2014. The US and Cuba have agreed to re-establish diplomatic relations and open economic and travel ties, marking a historic shift in U.S. policy toward the communist island after a half-century of enmity dating back to the Cold War, American officials said Wednesday. (AP)

Following months of secret talks the US will restore full diplomatic relations with Cuba after more than fifty years.

On Point Blog
On Point Blog
Our Week In The Web: December 19, 2014
Friday, Dec 19, 2014

Rage, shortlinks and things you people seem to be into, we guess. Also, Putin.

More »
Comment
 
Cosby Accuser Beverly Johnson: ‘He's A Black Man. I Had To Separate The Trayvon Martins, The Michael Browns From What Happened To Me’
Tuesday, Dec 16, 2014

Beverly Johnson accused comedian Bill Cosby of drugging her in a high-profile Vanity Fair column. She tells us why she waited so long to share her story, and why it was even harder to share now.

More »
2 Comments
 
Our Week In The Web: December 12, 2014
Friday, Dec 12, 2014

On listener engagement, the meeting of trans-Atlantic royalty and the elusive origins of the chicken. (We promise this feed hasn’t been taken over the BBC…yet)

More »
Comment