Joi Ito, Japan, Six Apart japan, Technorati
Joi made a quick presentation - quick meaning not short, but fast ;-) - about the new paradigm of communication born with the blog phenomenon. The break even point of publication has been driven down so much vs. The break-even point for content that fits into physical distribution, that this induces a totally different view on marketing and communication (for more on this, read "the long tail" article on Wired). If it can be that easy to publish if you skip the intermediaries, the issue is no longer to deliver content, but to discover it.
It is is about rediscovering word of mouth, listening as opposed to shouting as in the traditional marketing & advertising media.
It's no longer about protecting content but about getting people to listen to it. In a few years all the music of the world will be on the future iPODs and the like. Intellectual Property is becoming a myth in a Commons based content production system, where permission has already been granted.
The power of the networked media is rising and these media speak in a different voice, even in big companies. Look at GM's FastLane: Executives are honest in their posts, and, through conversations, build a completely different type of trust
It's about the rise of amateurs vs. professionals. Amateurism has a negative connotation (amateurs are people who can't be professionals), but it shouldn't. Look at the number of trackbacks between mainstream media and bloggers.
It's about being open and never trying to lock people into your own enterprise-driven world. Even AOL, which used to be closed are opening up. People only pay if they have no other choice.
It's about culture. You can't have people change their behaviors. Either your are analog or digital.
It's about democracy. Ethernet connected computers, TCP-IP established the network, html connected content, and blogs connect people. The biggest cultural gap is not between countries but between bloggers and non-bloggers.
In the end, it's really about free speech.
[My comment: There is an important political debate here, because the balance of power is bound to shift in favor of relatively educated youngsters who master internet communication, i.e. the young generation, which is really not in favor of Europe or Japan, where the population is ageing]