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March 12, 2012

You Are the Product

A reminder: we are the product.

In many respects the messianic advertiser is a phantom, a Ponzi scheme. Deep down the social networks know that they will never make that much advertising revenue, but they must present themselves otherwise in order to attract venture capital and protect their chances of a healthy stock market flotation down the line. All such online businesses which seem to be promising something for nothing – from social networking to file sharing – are really offering you, their audience, as a readymade and fully packaged item for purchase, be that by the ghost of advertising’s future, or the investor whose faith gives that ghost substance.