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|User Info||Convenience At What Price?; entered at 2017-01-03 12:32:31|
Registered: 2014-10-21 Tulsa, OK
I have noticed this trend for a while in nearly <i>all</i> free-to-user commercial online ventures. I think what happened is the following: (a) Silicon Valley VCs use stock as play money. That is, they use inflated valuations to buy companies, people, etc. They give stock to employees instead of hard-money compensation, etc. These stock valuations are based on future earnings which are based on eyeballs. (b) These companies are hitting upon the time when the stock "play money" is running out. Therefore, they are having to mass-convert eyeballs to hard cash. (c) Internet advertising is super-ignorable. Even when highly annoying, you remember the annoying more than the ad. I think I have clicked on between 2 and 5 advertisements on the Internet IN MY LIFE. (d) Companies are compensating for (c) by simply upping the volume, not realizing that this will ultimately drive their "eyeball count" waaay down in the long run.|
I work for Internet companies, but I am thankful that I have always worked for "down-to-earth" companies that actually charge for the service they are providing. Some of them also sell advertising, but not as a primary component of revenue. They do a service and charge for it.
Going forward, I think that (a) the free services will be unbearably advertising-focused, but that (b) there will develop paid services as well. However, because they are paid, the paid services will never have the kind of universal reach that the free ones do. I think that will actually be a good thing.