Steve Lohr writes in the NYTimes:
Mr. Diller and others have come to realize that two things succeed commercially on the World Wide Web: searching (like Google and Yahoo) and shopping (like Amazon.com and eBay).
The Internet is a low-cost communications technology. And a shopping site like Amazon.com is, in essence, a big database lashed to the Internet. There is, to be sure, plenty of marketing and technical innovation involved. But searching databases and processing transactions computers have been doing that for decades.
What has not happened is the birth of a new media. Writes Lohr: “The promised wonders of new media may yet arrive. In the meantime, the Internet has changed daily life in ways most people could not have imagined in 1994. People manage their lives and relationships via e-mail and instant messaging, and second-graders are skilled Google searchers.”