If there is a Web 2.0 bubble, it is surely in microblogging, a field popularized by Twitter.. Countless startups are thriving on the myth that sharing yourself online is too hard. Pownce cofounder Leah Culver graces the cover of MIT's alumni magazine. San Francisco's most self-involved Webheads can't stop gabbing about FriendFeed, which, as our intern Alaska Miller smartly explained to his mother, is a place where people who are really obsessed with the Internet can talk to others of like mind. And then there's Plurk, the much-mocked Twitter clone, which has drawn such derision that Web hipsters made up a company and claimed it had bought Plurk.
According to new stats from Hitwise, Plurk, the least cool microblogging startup around, might have the last laugh. Its Web traffic far exceeds FriendFeed's and Pownce's. And yet Twitter, while growing very fast, itself isn't very large. Its imitators are all so small, really, as to barely deserve mention, let alone magazine covers. Microblogging isn't just about very short updates. It's about very small businesses. If I wrote about them in line with their actual worth, this post would have been far shorter than 140 characters.