back to article Your attention has value, personal cryptocurrency will advertise it

Cryptocurrencies open the door to a world where everyone has their price. To understand why, consider Ethereum, a cryptocurrency that rests on the distributed ledger tech described by Satoshi Nakamoto in his 2008 white paper but includes a scripting language. That makes it, quite literally, "smart money.’ The idea of smart …

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Oh dear

I fear my supply of BAT will remain forever zero...

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Joke

Nananana nananana...

BATCoin !

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I only BAT my eyes at my wife.

If I were prone to BATting my eyes, that is.

In other words, the purveyors of this latest idiocy can fuck right the hell off.

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Another BATty idea

But just thinking about this, how do we price the advert? So much per pixel? Animated GIFS cost more? Sound costs more? Video cost a huge amount more? Irrelevant ads cost more?

This could bring the advertisers, or at least the advertising industry, into even more disturbing (to them) contact with reality than ad-blockers. Their favourite tricks which they believe are most effective at grabbing my attention would be those I'd price most highly as they're most annoying. If the advertisers caught on that they were paying more to be disliked....

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Re: Another BATty idea

Pricing adverts already happens. That's how they end up on your browser.

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Re: Another BATty idea

"Pricing adverts already happens."

Not by their objectionableness to the viewer.

"That's how they end up on your browser."

No they don't.

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15 million merits

Wasn't there a black mirror that was essentially this? That obviously went well.

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Forgive me if I'm being slow

But how does a website (such as El Reg) gain money from this exercise? Is there an implict stage here where a website charges the advertiser for ad space (using normal money) by which the advertiser can place their ads and pay the recipient in BAT? Or is there some arrangement where a website receives a proportion of the BAT paid to the end user which can then be exchanged for beer and pizza?

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Re: Forgive me if I'm being slow

"Or is there some arrangement where a website receives a proportion of the BAT paid to the end user which can then be exchanged for beer and pizza?"

From TFA: "Users gain the capacity to pay publishers directly for their content - in BAT."

I take it the proposed cycle is this:

1. Advertisers buy BATS for Real Money(TM) from Brave.

2 Brave holds the stock of BATs on behalf of the advertiser.

3. When the advertiser pushes an unwanted but nevertheless unblocked advert to the viewer it pays the viewer in BAT.

4. The user pays a publisher in BAT.

5. The publisher sells the BATs back to Brave for Real Money.

The slight snagette here is that Brave is supposed to be an adblocking browser. Presumably the twist is that the viewer buys the advertiser's BATs from Brave instead of being advertised at. The publisher gets paid, Brave gets paid twice and the adverts aren't seen. The advertiser actually gains from not pissing off potential customers but they'll not see it that way; they never do as they lack the requisite self-awareness.

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Re: Forgive me if I'm being slow

Thanks for the clarification - my morning brain managed to skip over the critical sentence.

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Re: Forgive me if I'm being slow

"1. Advertisers buy BATS for Real Money(TM) from Brave.

2 Brave holds the stock of BATs on behalf of the advertiser.

3. When the advertiser pushes an unwanted but nevertheless unblocked advert to the viewer it pays the viewer in BAT.

4. The user pays a publisher in BAT.

5. The publisher sells the BATs back to Brave for Real Money."

I have to admit I'm a bit confused at what the point of BAT here is. Here's an alternative cycle:

1. When the advertiser pushes an unwanted but nevertheless unblocked advert to the viewer it pays the viewer.

2. The user pays a publisher.

As far as I can tell this is identical to the cycle involving BAT in every respect, except you don't need to worry about swapping real money to pretend money and back again. The only downside is for Brave, whose only part in the whole thing is to act as an unnecessary middleman taking a cut at both ends. Considering the whole point was supposedly to "disintermediate" the middleman, immediately reintermediating themselves into the same position doesn't help matters at all; removing all middlemen, including Brave, seems a much better solution. If nothing else, it would serve as reasonable punishment for having used the word nonsensical jumble of letters "disintermediate".

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Re: Forgive me if I'm being slow

"As far as I can tell this is identical to the cycle involving BAT in every respect, except you don't need to worry about swapping real money to pretend money and back again."

Isn't going to happen. There's no mechanism for either 1 or 2 and even if there were the cycle would be more like

1) Advertiser pays viewer

2) Viewer pockets it

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Until the publishers can get a cut of the BAT ads revenue it is never going to become mainstream. People look for content (videos, photos, news etc) it just happens that the ads are on those pages because that is how the publishers make money from giving away content for free. If the publishers don't get a cut of the ad revenue from BAT they aren't going to have the BAT ads on their websites and therefore hardly anyone will see the BAT ads.

There are already platforms where you can get paid for just viewing ads and completing surveys etc and only a very small percent of people use these services as they are annoying when all your doing is viewing adverts.

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This has been tried before

Anyone remember AllAdvantage.com and similar back in the bubble 1.0 days?

They paid you to watch adverts, so people wrote something called Trembler which moved the mouse around the screen so that it would appear that you were watching adverts for the maximum permitted number of hours per day.

The only difference is it that they are paying in vouchers that are theoretically exchangeable for cash. So you set up a virtual machine to "watch" a load of adverts and earn a load of batcoins, write some rubbish in a blog, and pay yourself to read it.

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Re: This has been tried before

Regarding your last comments, anti-fraud methods are in place.

> Users are required to complete a KYC (know your customer) process in order to withdraw BAT from the local browser.

> Measuring user attention will be occurring within the platform, as opposed to a network-requested measurement event.

> The BAT team are setting frequency caps on how many BAT Ads a user will be served daily, going for quality over quantity and a more progressive ad experience.

> Only the user with the aid of BAT-enabled apps mediates between advertisers and publishers, so third-party invalid traffic and other fraud detection bypassed by bots will be excluded from the start.

The BAT team are in the process of documenting ad requirements, flow and attention metrics, which will be available for public review and comment soon.

You can find more information on the BAT website - https://basicattentiontoken.org/reducing-digital-ad-fraud/

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Re: This has been tried before

"> Users are required to complete a KYC (know your customer) process in order to withdraw BAT from the local browser."

There's only one thing they'd need to know about me: that I react adversely to ads and the only value in serving them to me is negative. How would they propose to move on from there?

This is the central problem with online advertising. People find it annoying. That's why they use adblockers. The value of an ad that's not seen is greater than one that is because the value of the one that is is negative.

AFAICS this is just another attempt to pull the wool over the advertisers' eyes and pretend that there's real value in shoving crap in the viewers' faces. Because once the advertisers realise they're being played for suckers by the advertising industry it's game over.

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Re: This has been tried before

Useful comment, thanks.

I still don't understand why I need another currency. If they simply pay me in bitcoin, I'd probably use their browser. As it is, they can take a running jump.

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Anonymous Coward

Suits me

The more he chooses to pump into BAT, the less he has left to donate to wingnut political causes.

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Anonymous Coward

"the invisible hand of the market" - yeah, right

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How to avoid faking "attention"?

1) have a script drive your browser around to a bunch of sites to load up on BAT

2) sell on open market

3) profit!

If BAT had real value, people would do this, driving the value to essentially zero. I don't see how this could possibly succeed, unless you have to take a CAPTCHA every minute (and there are still any left that machines can't do)

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Can I cuss if it's on topic?

Fuck Gary Becker

Fuck Human Capital

Fuck the neoliberals

Fuck new rapacious manifestations of the first three, on the internet

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