Micropayments for content | Seth’s Blog

This is a trouble that comes up just about every year or two, but no a person has applied a practical alternative nevertheless.

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Marketing is a amazingly terrible way for a lifestyle to pay for content material, because the variety of material that gets rewarded is typically dumbed down for a substantial viewers or is optimized for a little audience of men and women keen to buy anything that will make a profit.

It’s also inefficient, as advertisers simply cannot know in advance what is going to operate, and creators get a extremely tiny share of the advert spend.

An substitute is to spend for what you get, the way we handle carrots, baseballs and clarinets. As a substitute of buying a baseball, even though, you are buying a probability to look at a online video.

Micropayments are a method in which you pay back a penny or a nickel or a dollar for a piece of content material.

It introduces two kinds of friction, though:

  1. There needs to be a tech technique that can successfully move small quantities of money all around.
  2. As a reader/purchaser of content material, you will need to constantly make selections about what is “worth it.”

About thirty years in the past, I explained a very simple remedy to both of those troubles:

For $25 you can obtain a content passport. It is accessible for obtain on any internet site that is part of the information community, and you will need one particular to read the content on their site. The site that sells it to you gets $10 in commission for selling it to you.

It keeps keep track of of each member web site you check out (which is genuinely quick now, with a cookie). And then the coordinator of the system allocates, on a share basis, $10 to the internet sites you pay a visit to. It is all gonna go somewhere, regardless of whether you stop by a person web page or a thousand. There’s no friction, since it is a buffet, just like it is now. Read through all you want, no advertisements, no hassles.

The web pages that get frequented the most get the most mixture dollars from the every month distributions of royalties.

Each website has an incentive to sell a ton of passports (the fee is major) and the coordinator of the community is earning 25% as well.

It’s genuinely crystal clear who the consumer is (the reader) and it’s simple for any web page to be part of the network. Aligned incentives, a uncomplicated and resilient remedy.

Have fun. (PS this is unrelated to yesterday’s article about federations, just a coincidence.)

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