"Twelve months ago, it was clear the mass consumer was going to have at his or her disposal many more gadgets with greater capacity to record, store and share content. It was going to be a year in which people started to challenge those who traditionally provide us with content, be it news, music, or movies....OK, masses have never really had a very powerful voice until technology, the internet and blogging have turned everything upside down and reversed the power based.
"But look at 2006 through a different lens and you’ll see another story, one that isn’t about conflict or great men. It’s a story about community and collaboration on a scale never seen before. . . . It’s about the many wresting power from the few and helping one another for nothing and how that will not only change the world, but also change the way the world changes. . . .Remember reading interesting argument - its both too soon and too late to recognize “You” because, what will make “You” interesting hasn’t happened yet. Yes, “You” are TiVo-ing, customizing ringtones and downloading music/movies, but in numbers that matter “You” aren’t yet uploading your own television commercials, forming your own social networks, creating newscasts or even linking to each other’s blogs. Perhaps, in a year in which so much has happened involving so many notable people, “They” couldn’t decide. Or perhaps “They” they were being clever. Or lazy. But wise? “I” don’t think so.
The new Web is a very different thing. It’s a tool for bringing together the small contributions of millions of people and making them matter. Silicon Valley consultants call it Web 2.0, as if it were a new version of some old software. But it’s really a revolution. . . .
And for seizing the reins of the global media, for founding and framing the new digital democracy, for working for nothing and beating the pros at their own game, TIME’s Person of the Year for 2006 is you. . . .