Monday, 16 April 2018

technology, entertainment, design

Via Super Punch, we are invited to consider the presentation that’s the buzz of this year’s TED Talk conference which was held last week in Vancouver. Computer scientist and virtual-reality pioneer Jaron Lanier lamented the “free,” ad-based internet that we’ve created and suggested that these behaviour modification and commodification empires either adopt a subscription model, a utility that one pays for like any other service, or abandon this venture entirely.
“We cannot have a society in which, if two people wish to communicate, the only way that can happen is if it’s financed by a third party who wishes to manipulate them.” People of course encouraged to keep up their end of whatever topic of discussion might be circulating out there in the ether, as well. Charging a fee for their services (Marginal Revolution crunched the numbers earlier and determined that globally a membership fee of twenty dollars would cover the advertising revenue it earned per user per year) and it would drive improvement to make the site a service worth paying for. Would you rather have your outlook and opinions meddled with for free or pay a nominal fee and get your money’s worth? One pays for quality. If everyone roundly rejects paying anything for a service that once touted itself as complimentary and always would be, what are we to infer if such a business model fail to attract customers and reach critical, networked mass? Ideas worth spreading, indeed.