Oh, this is great. Every now and then, someone has a brainwave to the effect of "hey, we might be getting carried away with this whole Internet thing." It's also known as the Web 2.0 bubble story.
Robert Scoble has entered this fray, check out the post here. Choice quotes:
I’m noticing something in the valley. The newer companies are struggling to get noticed. Are struggling to figure out how to get outside the TechCrunch/TailRank/TechMeme/Reddit/Digg/Slashdot/Om/Scoble bubble.
Web 2.0 is largely funded by advertising. Advertising is an AUDIENCE business. So, when Paul Graham is telling his companies to worry about building audience first, that’s actually a good point of view to take. It’s like building a magazine. If you don’t have any readers you won’t get any advertisers.
Of course, that's why they also call it the new media business.
Finally, one last cheeky observation. Personally, I'm a big fan of TechCrunch (the spark for this discussion) but I wonder if this is a shark jumping moment. Is TC on track to become The Industry Standard of Web 2.0? ie drinking a shade too much kool aid? :)