Given the prevailing industrial models over the past century and a half, the enormous capital outlays needed for production — not only plant and equipment for manufacturing, but the enormous price of a radio station, recording studio or state-of-the-art printing press — required large hierarchical organizations to govern the physical capital and the people working it. And given the enormous transaction costs of monitoring their activities, it was commonly understood that a giant bureaucratic organization was needed to regulate such business firms.  
 
The desktop computer and the Internet changed all this. As Hacque argues, the first principle of a hyperconnected world is information: “information flows much faster and more freely. So it’s less costly to ascertain who’s really evil — and who’s really good.” The second principle is discipline: “Cheap information lays the foundations for more collective action. It’s less costly to punish those who are evil.”  
 
The implications of this are just starting to sink in for our corporate overlords. We’re barely in the beginning stages of a fundamental transformation in which corporate executives live with the reality constantly in the back of their mind that any particular cutting of corners on safety or customer service, any particular downsizing or speedup, any grinding of the boot into the faces of labor, will show up on WikiLeaks. And then become the focus of a campaign of boycotts, picketing and letter-writing organized by some advocacy group like the Wal-Mart Workers’ Association or EmployerNameSucks.com.