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ElReg40™ seeks the world's worst web 2.0 ideas

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Competition Readers who live on planet Earth may have failed to notice it but the white hot, bleeding edge, ground zero of web 2.0 imagineering this week was the TechCrunch40 conference in San Francisco.

Thankfully for us, The Guardian had its finger on the pulse, and had the editorial imagination to publish 8,000 words about the best and most exciting tech start-up ideas being demonstrated by a camarilla of massive-brained visionaries. At time of writing, the 17 blog entries carry 17 comments (μ = 1).

It's journalism 2.0 in action. There's a disintermediating Twitter feed too (most recent entry: "Sometimes you have those moments that make you think it really isn't worth it").

So, in the spirit of web 2.0, we've decided to copy the TechCrunch40 idea...only change it a teensy little bit. We want to know the worst web 2.0 business you can possibly imagine.

To be considered for ElReg40™, your young company will need a daft name and a short description that sums up how it's going to change the universe. If two or three sentences can't explain the deep awesomeness of your plan, then it won't generate the child-like wonderment we're looking for.

As an example, here's a real pitch from something called Kaltura, which apparently won the People's Choice award at TechCrunch40:

We have developed a revolutionary concept in peer production and online rich media. Think of it as YouTube meets Wikipedia...the result equals: online group video making - Kaltura.

Ain't she special? We can smell IPO.

To get you started, here are some words you might want to throw in the mixer: Ajax, rich, peer, flash, social, powered, meme, gadget, widget, wiki, wikiwidget, Facebook, Faceblook, content, lifestyle, media, group, paradigm, monetise, targeted, engagement, user-generated, folksonomy, mobile, 2.0, 3.0, 3.141, crowd-sourcing, MC Hammer, digitivity, mash, feed, sausage, beans. And if you're struggling with a name, try this.

It's just so easy.

Lambee: a virtual meme-powered flash engagement mash. Think VMWare meets Yahoo! Answers on acid.

Nonsense clearly, but we're sure you can do better than us. Go wild and send your entries here. We'll post the best worst 40 (or we might halve it to 20, or double it to 80 if we feel like it) in a glitzy extravaganza of HTML-formatted text-based publishing next week.

The winner of this prestigious contest gets our one-off "Jemima Kiss of Death" statuette, hand-carved by blind craftsmen in the Google data mines from 100 per cent stardust (it's what web 2.0 is made of, people), a $50,000 dollar sub-prime mortgage in seed funding, and a pair of concrete boots for when it goes titsup. Oh, and a Reg goodie bag.

Happy paradigm shifting. The only limit, apart from the three sentences thing, is how far you dare to dream. ®

Disclaimer: All your start-up idea are belong to us.

The smart choice: opportunity from uncertainty

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