In this paper we investigate the development and outcome of two emerging technologies, that is the Semantic Web and the Web 2.0. Our research question is; how do we explain the surprising success of Web 2.0 and the equally surprising non-fulfillment of the Semantic Web. Building on a case study approach we conducted a in depth comparative analysis of the two emerging technologies. We propose two conclusions. First; traditional top-down management of an emerging global technology has proved not to be effective in the case of the Semantic Web and Web 2.0, and second; the success for such global technologies is mainly associated with bootstrapping an already installed base. We discuss the implications of these findings.