In the age of altcoins, at least one news site is taking a novel approach to making ends meet.
Salon explains its program, which it calls a beta, like so:
“… Like most media sites, ad-blockers cut deeply into our revenue and create a more one-sided relationship between reader and publisher.
We realize that specific technological developments now mean that it is not merely the reader’s eyeballs that have value to our site — it’s also your computer’s ability to make calculations, too. Indeed, your computer itself can help support our ability to pay our editors and journalists.”
The offering is a clever if controversial way to recoup lost ad revenue. It’s no secret that
Still, running software like this, which is often inserted onto unsuspecting machines via malware, is a big ask from readers and it’s important that less technical readers know what they’re getting into. Salon sets this up as an opt-in process which is good, though it only mentions Coinhive’s name in the small opt-in box (“powered by Coinhive”) and not in its full FAQ page. Coinhive gets a bad rap because it can be used for illicit purposes, though the software is widely regarded as legitimate, as is the coin that it mines. Readers should have a chance to make up their own minds and be provided with all of the specifics.
While Bitcoin soaks up most of the spotlight, some virtual currency projects are specifically looking to reshuffle the stacked relationships between platforms and content creators. One called
On the whole, Salon sounds surprisingly bullish on blockchain technology, announcing that it “[plans] to further use any learnings from this to help support the evolution and growth of blockchain technology, digital currencies and other ways to better service the value exchange between content and user contribution.”
Like publishers, plenty of internet users are waking up to the raw deal of modern day social media use and looking for novel ways to make a little passive income or otherwise get paid for the content they push out to the world. Blockchain projects that aren’t too busy overhyping ICO gains to actually build something cool could have a shot at democratizing the online content game.
While that might be idealistic, Salon sounds like it understands that emerging technologies offer some unique opportunities for anyone who isn’t afraid to rock the
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