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Subject: Re: UKNM: Dot Com Fever
From: Quentin Langley
Date: Wed, 12 Apr 2000 14:50:25 +0100

I don't think anyone in this group is suffering from
"techno-fear" and throwing around insults doesn't make
you clever.

You have volunteered a reasonable working definition
of an e-business, but it doesn't justify your claim
that all businesses will become them. Quite the
reverse. A great many will want to organise
relationships with suppliers electronically, but many
businesses will keep relationships with their
customers strictly offline.

There is a wide range of personal service businesses
where little or no advantage can be found in
organising customer interfaces electronically. Given
that you have to be in the same room as your barber to
have your hair cut what is the advantage in having an
electronic interface as well? I know that some people
see "stylists" not barbers. They make appointments
and feel it is advantageous to see the same person
each time. Under those circumstances it makes sense,
but for those of us who wander in and say "a number
two please" it doesn't.

Health clubs? Hmm, maybe. People book tennis courts,
classes and appointments with personal trainers. But
at a lot of gyms people just walk in, train, and walk
out again.

Pubs? People go there for the social aspects.
Organising these electronically is unlikely to enhance
the experience.

--- Ray Taylor <rayateyeconomy [dot] com> wrote:
> From: Quentin Langley <qlangleyatyahoo [dot] com>
> > Now, this is just silly. What on Earth do you
> mean by
> > saying that all businesses will be "e-businesses"?
> > What do you mean by the term?
> Well, I'm no authority on the subject of information
> and communications
> technology but my understanding is that it means
> businesses that are
> fundamentally organised electronically, including
> all supplier and customer
> transactions, end-to-end. The concept pre-dates the
> Web, and has somewhat
> suffered from the belief that it's got something to
> do with "getting a web
> site."
> > If a hairdresser allowed you to book an
> appointment
> > online and sent the stylist around to see then I
> > suppose that would make it an e-business, even
> though
> > the actual cutting would be by conventional means.
> It goes further than that. If the hairdresser could
> spend more time doing
> the cutting and chatting to the customer instead of
> having to take orders,
> order supplies, do accounts, pay heating bills, pay
> invoices, etc., then
> this would probably be the point at which the
> hairdresser became an
> e-business.
> > Tescodirect is an e-business.
> No it isn't. It's a web site, it's a retail service,
> a home delivery
> service, etc. But it certainly is not an e-business.
> It's not even a direct
> sales operation, since you still buy from a retailer
> at retail prices. The
> fact that TescoDirect takes orders online and
> delivers products to the door
> is very commendable and no doubt gives rise to lots
> of corporate
> back-slapping in Cheshunt. But e-business it is not.
> > But I doubt that most
> > hairdressers, prostitutes, pubs or gyms are going
> to
> > operate on this basis.
> I would have thought that prostitution is a business
> that works exceedingly
> well on the internet already. I have never been a
> prostitute but I imagine
> that performing to a camera in a different country
> to your client would be
> an absolute advantage from the point of view of
> health, safety and sanity.
> But any of the businesses above would benefit from
> becoming e-businesses.
> And for the benefit of members of this list with
> double figure IQs,
> e-business does NOT mean that you do not deal with
> your customers face to
> face. It does NOT mean that hairdressers have to
> send you a pair of scissors
> by Parcelforce, and it does NOT mean that people
> will STOP going into High
> Street shops.
> On the contrary, my view is that the likes of Amazon
> (probably the closest
> thing yet to an e-business) will at some point open
> up, or acquire, bricks
> and mortar retail outlets as part of their ongoing
> brand extension.
> Come on people, abandon your technofear and start
> looking at what the future
> has in store. It doesn't stop with a pretty web
> site.
> Ray Taylor

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  UKNM: What is e-business?, Ray Taylor

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