Idle Speculation on the Future of Media

Vikram Bath

Vikram Bath is the pseudonym of a former business school professor living in the United States with his wife, daughter, and dog. (Dog pictured.) His current interests include amateur philosophy of science, business, and economics. Tweet at him at @vikrambath1.

Related Post Roulette

18 Responses

  1. Michael Cain says:

    Prediction: Sometime in the next ten years, the SCOTUS will hear a case regarding whether the law requiring that if you download the containing URL, you are required to download and display all of the contained content, is constitutional. When the Court decides that it is, I am prepared to go to jail. Or carry out my occasional threat to find a nice cave where I can retreat and live out my last years.Report

  2. Mo says:

    there are some promising experiments going on. One is Buzzfeed. Buzzfeed doesn’t interleave unwanted ads into the content they have. Instead, they try to make the ads themselves appealing.

    How is sponsored content an experiment? Sponsored content dates back to the ink stained finger newspaper days. There have been “Special Advertising Sections” in newspapers and magazines as long as I can remember.Report

    • Oscar Gordon in reply to Mo says:

      I seem to recall those being quite clearly marked as such. The past decade or so has seen such sponsored content being much more subtle and sold as “news” or “content”, rather than what it is, “advertising”.Report

    • DensityDuck in reply to Mo says:

      It’s the difference between a Special Advertising Section, and the recipe lady writing “now we make the icing flowers, and by the way, Wilton makes a tool that’s absolutely perfect for doing these, you can get it for five-ninety-five at your local Jo-Ann Fabrics store, only I got mine for three bucks because I signed up for coupons on!”Report

  3. Will Truman says:

    It kind of makes me wonder what my data usage would look like without ads. I suspect it wouldn’t be hugely different, though, because websites are not how I use my data for the most part. Which sort of makes NYT ads the “get one” of a “buy one get one free”… but I could be wrong.

    I would very much support a system of micropayments. I sort of think that newspapers need to get together and exchange article reads. I’m not going to buy a subscription to the Boston Globe, and therefore they get none of my money. But I’d be a lot more likely to subscribe to my local paper if it also gave me access to other city papers. Or if there were a single pot to put money into that gave me unlimited or x-number views of national urban papers and the money were distributed that way, that would be a winner.

    Of course, all of this could run into some serious anti-trust issues.Report

    • Michael Cain in reply to Will Truman says:

      I suppose I could get some idea of it. Somewhere here I have an old piece of Perl code I wrote when I was working in tech that downloads a URL and all the embedded elements recursively. It was primarily intended to measure download time rather than size, but that’s an easy fix. Easylist is available as an example set of filters for comparison. Might be too much work — the recursive descent would have to be extended to cover Javascript, since so many sites download a small script first that goes back and gets the big ugly stuff.Report

  4. Saul Degraw says:

    I don’t pay for Pandora. As of yet the ads are often short and they play one or two after long song sessions. This is different than commercial radio where there seem to be more commercials than songs and community radio with long pledge breaks.

    What I wonder about Buzzfeed is how much subtle sponsored content is going on. A lot of stuff is labeled as sponsored content but other stuff seems like it should be but is not. Articles like 20 kitchen gadgets foodies need NOW are not marked sponsored but companies would pay, wouldn’t they?Report

    • Morat20 in reply to Saul Degraw says:

      Pandora has a new “thumbprint” station that’s seeded off everything you’ve ever thumbed up. Only problem is it’s not really as scattered as it should be –though — it’s too close to a shuffle made up out of my custom stations.

      I’m sure they’ll work it out, and it’s pretty nice.Report

  5. Joe Sal says:

    I just installed Dillo and ran through a few sites. It kind of low-techs out the advertisements. The downside is typing in the sites manually. This page came up fast, for some reason I don’t see the reply buttons on individual comments.Report