Kevin Werbach also read Cory’s piece, and he quibbles that technology and policy have always been linked. While this is not an invalid point, I think the link between the two has been getting tighter and tighter.
Five years ago a broad set of people weren’t able to factor in the real capability of the Internet into their thinking (despite the fact that they were sending their stockbrokers all of their money to invest in it). As a result, things like Napster (Kevin’s example), got some running room before people started to take it seriously.
Now more and more people have seen the patterns of adoption and can extrapolate to the effects. If I were to announce a Napster like service, even one that was a unique application in another space, someone would notice and start to raise questions as soon as my idea was public.