Fortune magazine ran a round-up of all the analysts who predicted seven key figures prior to Apple posting their Q1 2011 results. In one corner you had the analysts from Goldman Sachs, Piper Jaffray and Citigroup. In the other, amateur blogger analysts.
The amateurs blew the pros out of the water.
'The bottom 20 spots were all held by professionals working for the banks and brokerage houses. Taken as a whole, the numbers they sent their paying clients were off by a margin (9.04%) more than twice as big as those generated by the guys who do it for free (3.94%).'
Of course, one swallow does not make a summer. It's too early to tell whether they'll consistently outperform Wall Street but given the freedom of information online, the lines between amateurs (who do stuff for the love of it) and pros (paid) are definitely blurring.
Passion + Data + Insight = Win
"Sometimes, I wish we were all amateurs again. I'd play for nothing. Ab-so-lute-ly free. But that's not the system." Dan Marino.
I'm still trying to work out how significant this is but I get the feeling it's a pretty big deal.