The Observer ran a feature today by web writer John Naughton, citing the 15 sites that made the web what it is today, some 15 years after it’s ‘birth’.
Predictably with these list-based pieces, you always pick out the ones the compilers missed out. But for what it’s worth, here’s the list:
1. eBay.com – no argument there, but I’ve never been an avid e-bayer
2. Wikipedia.com – one of the best sites in the world, but will it last, the more people that discover it, and subsequently spoil it for everyone else
3. Napster.com – influential, sure. But it only has 500,000 paying customers, hardly one of the web’s biggies
4. Youtube.com – deservedly on the list. But if youtube can make it, then why not the equally innovative, Flickr.com?
5. Blogger.com – one of the web’s influencers, to be sure
6 Friendsreunited.com – a household name, but has it had its day?
7. Drudgereport.com – the first in the list that I hadn’t heard of
8. Myspace.com – I wonder if all it’s users know (or care) that they’re Rupert Murdoch customers?
9. Amazon.com – reinvented shopping
10. Slashdot.org – the geek’s favourite
11. Salon.com – another new one for me
12. Craigslist.org – a great article in the Observer’s magazine today, tells you everything you need to know about the sites founder Craig Newman
13. Google.com – to me, the site that almost most represents what the web is about
14. Yahoo.com – my first email address was a yahoo based one, and almost 10 years later, I’m still using it
15. Easyjet.com – if Amazon reinvented shopping, then easyjet did the same for air travel
So, with only a passing mention of Flickr in the article, there was no space for Alexa.com, Bebo.com, Altavista, dmoz.org or my predictions for the future, Bloglines.com, last.fm, Digg.com, or whichever gambling website ends up coming out on top.
I’ve not got any real issues with the article, apart from that the author makes no mention of non-English language websites. According to web research site Alexa.com, only 4 out of the top 10 global websites are in English. We sometimes forget that America doesn’t own the web. At least not yet.