The new facts of life

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"The Cluetrain Manifesto" is based on 95 theses posted on the Web at www.cluetrain.com by the four high-tech professionals who later authored the book. Here are 12 of the theses:

1. Markets are conversations.

2. Markets consist of human beings, not demographic sectors.

6. The Internet is enabling conversations among human beings that were simply not possible in the era of mass media.

17. Companies that assume online markets are the same markets that used to watch their ads on television are kidding themselves.

19. Companies can now communicate with their markets directly. If they blow it, it could be their last chance.

23. Companies attempting to "position" themselves need to take a position. Optimally, it should relate to something their market actually cares about.

30. Brand loyalty is the corporate version of going steady, but the breakup is inevitable -- and coming fast. Because they are networked, smart markets are able to renegotiate relationships with blinding speed.

74. We are immune to advertising. Just forget it.

75. If you want us to talk to you, tell us something. Make it something interesting for a change.

81. Have you noticed that, in itself, money is kind of one-dimensional and boring? What else can we talk about?

83. We want you to take 50 million of us as seriously as you take one reporter from The Wall Street Journal.

90. Even at its worst, our newfound conversation is more interesting than most trade shows, more entertaining than any TV sitcom, and certainly more true-to-life than the corporate Web sites we've been seeing.

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