Perception is a powerful thing. When something isn’t popular, like Path anywhere outside of Indonesia, people have a lot of opinions on why it’s a lousy product. When something seems to be a hit, like the Yo app, people have a lot of opinions on why it’s the greatest thing since sliced bread.
It’s all done on the altar of success. Traction is the only truth that matters, and people will do whatever mental gymnastics is required to work their way backwards to explain that success (or lack thereof). Our tech culture prides itself on being smart, but it is still one where outcome rules logic.
I already wrote about Yo, an app so unsubstantial that Apple didn’t even want to publish it to their store. Yo didn’t make some kind of technological or usability breakthrough — it is successful because it’s so stupid in its simplicity that people find it a hoot to download and talk about.
Remember those “wassup” Budweiser ads that got everybody going wassuuuuup?