Monday, December 18, 2017

More evidence that the ad based revenue model is ending

Many websites are now implementing ad block checkers which either stop you from accessing the content or beg pitifully for you to unblock the ads:

These sites are trying to convince people to waste their time and risk computer infection by allowing ads to play through.  Ads slow down the pages loads and just pretty much ruin the experience.  That is why I have never had them on my site and that is why I refuse to put up with them on other sites.  I am certainly not alone in being very tired of ad-supported content.  And I will also say that currently there are 30 different options for reading a particular story.  No news site has an exclusive on news.  So if someone blocks me I just go elsewhere. 

None of this is new but what is new is that with the detection of ad blockers we can expect that those trying to distribute their news will now know for sure just how useless ads have become and those who pay for these ads will also figure it out.  So these messages we are seeing are not just for our benefit because along with them comes statistical data collection.  And when they run the numbers they are going to figure out that blocking people today because they won't pay a fee for parroted / non value added news and also that people will not turn off their ad blockers for any reason at all.  When all of this is understood, changes will occur.  Why?  Because someone is going to figure out how to actually make money in news again while most of the useless current fake news providers go by the wayside.  That is my thesis.

Until those who want to make a living at providing news begin to add value other than parroting the same content, nobody is going to unblock their ads and nobody is going to pay them. This is why I predict the rebirth of investigative reporting.  Companies will invest in digging up real news that people actually care about. When that happens I will be glad to pay a reasonable monthly fee for it, perhaps up to $15 per month.  It certainly should not cost more than it used to cost to take the newspaper daily and in fact should be much cheaper since electronic distribution of information is inherently cheaper than physical distribution.

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