Monday, August 20, 2007

Has the time come to change the advertisement overload madness?

Living in the US I can never stop to wonder why people still watch television shows that are interrupted every 10 minutes with endless pharmaceutical, car and self-promoting advertisement. I like a few shows, like “The Office”, but I choose to download it via iTunes and pay for it instead of being exposed to the advertisement. This is a wake-up call to the advertisers. Can you imagine how the business model for entertainment would change if the show creators did not depend on advertisement sponsors to be profitable? Since 1996 with InterCommunity, Instant Powers, WikiGazette and ANDoo I have been promoting the concept of contextual content to the right user and community; today’s’ advertiser’s Holy Grail. Well, we all know Google has embraced the model but they are also facing privacy issues and can’t have a direct line into my real interests and present context (at least I hope ;-(. They have to guess what I want with complex algorithms and mad mathematicians hidden somewhere on the Google campus. I believe that the next wave of contextual advertisement will be permission-based and user-centric. Our challenge, as technologists and system architects, is to find a lasting and ubiquitous model that does not reside on large servers, but instead where the consumer’s experience takes place. Let me know your thoughts on the subject.

Bill, what do you think?