Sometimes incumbents are so entrenched and incentivized by the status quo that the only way a better offering is going to get to consumers is by throwing a big ball of disruption into the marketplace.
Two examples highlighted in recent articles are Uber and Aereo. Are their solutions perfect? No. Are their solutions bringing a more customer-focused approach to stale industries? Yes. Are their solutions breaking laws? Debatable. Should those laws be updated to clearly allow innovative approaches that bring better services to Americans? Yes. Would there ever even be a discussion about updating those laws if startups like these didn’t force the issue? No way. And that in itself makes their efforts worthwhile.
“…But Uber’s got something that regular taxi or limo services don’t have. So do SideCar and Lyft. They have an identity system that connects a driver to a ride. They have rating systems to help determine which drivers are doing a good job, and which aren’t. They have feedback systems through which unhappy passengers can report something that went wrong. And, in the case of a crime, they have time, date, and ride logs so they can quickly identify perpetrators. Which means, if you were a criminal and somehow got through the pre-vetting process for any of these new services, you’d have to be an absolute idiot to commit a crime while on the job…”
“…It’s as if the mirror cracked and you can see these changes are starting to happen all over the place,” Mr. Diller said. “Programming over the Internet is going to happen, and cable is only now waking up to the fact that everybody hates them. I think we’re on the side of the angels…”