Kicking my shoes off on a Friday, and thinking back over this past week. Have been chatting with my-son-the-gamer about "rushes."
And I don't mean the kind of rush you get when you level-up in Halo, Call of Duty, World of Warcraft, etc., etc. (Yep, I'm learnin' the lingo...)
I'm more interested in figuring out what the "next new thing" or even the "current new thing" is. What everyone's rushing to, in terms of making easy money.
Like the Gold Rush in California (1849).
Or, the Silver Rush in Colorado (1879).
Or, the dot.com boom (mid-1990s).
Or... the real estate boom (early-ish 2000s).
(If you're interested in some of the commonalities, here's a great New York Times article from 2000 talking about the Gold Rush, the Oil Rush, and the Dot.com Rush that sums things up nicely...)
It's more a frame of mind I'm looking for: The get in, get rich, get out mentality that doesn't see failure as a personal possibility.
With these kind of rushes, you also tend to find a media frenzy that feeds into/off of the growing belief of the populace that, hey, look at all those folks who did [whatever], I can do it and become rich too!
For instance, how many people do you know who became real-estate agents in the early- to mid-2000s, thinking it'd be "easy money?" Or people who got into the "flipping houses" game?
Okay, I think we'd agree that's pretty much over.
So, what's the hot topic now?
Is it social networks? Facebook. Twitter. deviantART. LinkedIn. These are the ones off the top of my head. How easy is it to actually start up a new social network?
Is it apps? Angry Birds, anyone?
Is it online games? ... heard of MineCraft?
Is it cleantech/greentech? Solar energy, smart grid, electric cars. Hmm.
In my little corner of the world, in the publishing and writing field, I can see/sense a "rush" mentality regarding epublishing and ebooks. I hear echoes of what I think of as "rush rhetoric":
Anyone can do it!
So-and-so is making $$$ per month, selling his/her ebooks... and you can too!
What do you think?