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SACC San Francisco has put in a new, higher gear for 2009—first the Swedish national soccer team played against the national Mexican team in Oakland at the end of January. SACC members got to enjoy the game in a private suite at the arena. While munching on comfort foods and enjoying complimentary drinks, an enthusiastic group of members cheered the Swedish team to a 1-0 win. With moods at the top, the business mixer of the evening turned into a memorable event for grateful members and sponsors alike.
The February Luncheon was next. Chris Anderson, one of the most knowledgeable, insightful and articulate voices at the center of the internet based economy or the dynamics of the interactive community sometimes referred to as “Wikinomics.”
Editor-in-chief of American magazine Wired and author of NY Times bestseller “The Long Tale,” Chris Anderson joined the monthly luncheon at the Urban Tavern at the Hilton San Francisco. 35 members were invited to this intimate and interesting luncheon where classic Swedish raggmunk & lingon was served. During the luncheon attendees had the pleasure of getting an exclusive presentation on Anderson’s latest book “Free! Why $0.00 is the Future of Business for free.” The book examines the rise of pricing models which give products and services to customers for free. The concept of Anderson’s book is basically that the Internet is currently creating the first ever non-monetary economy. [At least for the end-user…] Since the Internet is built on the assumption that everything is available cheaper online, all of the time, and now for free, a growing number of companies such as Google and Wikipedia have made a fortune by offering user services for free.
In the long run, Anderson claims, everything that could be transformed into digital services will either have to be free or at least compete with services that already are free, like Wikipedia. But how will the companies make money if they’re giving away services for free? The answer is that a few people will pay while the rest, the masses of users, don’t.
“In the old days it was all about giving away 1% of the cookies and to sell the rest 99 %. Today, online, the situation is actually the opposite — you give away 99% and charge only for 1%,” Anderson says.
The group of members really appreciated Anderson’s speech and also got a chance to ask him questions and discuss new trends in the economy. When asked the question whether his book is going to be free, Anderson said that books are the exceptions but he ensured us that the digital copy of the book (not surprisingly) will indeed be free.

by Wilhelmina Douglas

About the speaker
Chris Anderson (born 1961) is editor-in-chief of Wired Magazine. He coined the phrase “The Long Tail” in an acclaimed Wired article, which he expanded upon in the book “The Long Tail: Why the Future of Business Is Selling Less of More” (2006). He currently lives in Berkeley, California with his wife and five young children. Before joining Wired in 2001, he worked at The Economist, where he launched their coverage of the Internet. He has a degree in physics from George Washington University and did research at Los Alamos National Laboratory. He has also worked at the journals Nature and Science.

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