armadillo and a bike oddly together
About the New Clues

In 1999, most of the media saw the Web as a new way of publishing, and businesses saw it as a new way to sell us stuff. Meanwhile, the rest of us were getting to know one another, were inventing things, and were having a party.

Four of us got so annoyed by the insistence on misunderstanding the Net that we tried to spell it out in 95 theses that we posted as the Cluetrain Manifesto.

That Manifesto had four authors: Doc Searls and David Weinberger who wrote these new clues, and Christopher Locke and Rick Levine. We four also wrote a book called The Cluetrain Manifesto that became a business best-seller. You can read the entire original book (as opposed to the currently available Tenth Anniversary edition that includes copious later reflections) online for free.

Chris writes and cogitates in Boulder. Rick and his brother have Kickstarted a very cool sock company, XOAB.

Doc and David have independently written a number of books (Doc | David) about the Internet. They have also been fellows at the Harvard Berkman Center for Internet & Society where Doc continues to instigate ProjectVRM parade, and David is a senior researcher. Until recently, David co-directed the Harvard Library Innovation Lab. In Feb. 2015, he'll be a fellow at Harvard's Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics, and Public Policy, and will be teaching at Emerson College. Both Doc and David have families, lives, etc., and like long walks on the beach and snuggling under blankets on chilly evenings. We welcome your comments.

January 8, 2015

Join us at Or Facebook.

Open Source Publishing

These New Clues are designed to be shared and re-used without our permission. Use them however you want. Make them your own. We only request that you please point back at this original page: because that's just polite.

We intend these clues to be an example of open source publishing so that people can build their own sets of clues, format them the way they like, and build applications that provide new ways of accessing them. Here's what we've done to enable this:

  • We've put the text of this page into the public domain under a Creative Commons 0 license. That means you do not have to ask permission before using any or all of the text of this page. So, please do not ask us for permission. For God's sake just use it.
  • If you click on a clue number (or section letter), you'll see a link that points directly at that clue or section. There's also some HTML code you can copy and paste to embed the clue into your own page.
  • The clues are available for reuse in a GitHub repository.
  • To make it easier to write apps (preferably Web-based but we're not fanatics about this sort of thing), the clues and the preamble are available as JSON, OPML, XML, and as a plain text list. We hope to add some other data formats as well.

While we've put the text that we wrote into the public domain, the photograph at the top of the armadillo and the bike was posted at Flickr by e. res under a Creative Commons BY 2.0 license that lets anyone use it so long as they attribute it to her/him and share it with others. (We edited it.)

How people are using the clues
Dave Winer, whose advice on our site and project was very helpful, at the time of our launch had already created a lovely browser-based listicle version of the clues that lets you view them sequentially. It uses a JSON list of the clues we've mounted here. (1.8.2015)
On the morning of the New Clues launch took the full text (preamble + clues) and created its own version of the clues with a new title and a fresh design. (1.8.2015)
By the end of the day we launched, John Johnson had built and posted a fun Give Me a Clue randomizer. (1.8.2015)
Kevin Marks quickly posted a plain-text version that lets you annotate it via "fragmention" (note: that's not "fragmentation") [example] and that gathers links to it via the WebMention service. (1.9.2015)
For those who prefer their words in Word, Neville Hobson has posted a Microsoft Word version. (1.10.2015)