Now, how do we sell stuff? Who is paying for the internet and what happened to that company we once called Google?
The internet is a perfect example of a utopian ideal gone wrong. Built for scientific communication in the 1970s, our World Wide Web is now at the mercy of organisations like Google and Facebook who are either selling your data or your attention.
By 2022 advertising in digital media is poised to grow to $427.3 billion. The business model of the internet is advertising. And you are the product.
Think of the repercussions! Platforms would collapse; revenue on news sites would disappear; thousands of jobs built around online ads would be redundant and all sorts of businesses would feel the pain. The internet as we know it would cease to exist.
Though perhaps this would also signal the end of data misuse and privacy concerns; the democratisation of the internet would increase and a potentially murky marketing practice would revert to old school methods.
Are we willing to sustain an ad-free internet? What if we have no choice?