Facebook wants to be the attention economy's central banker

Warren Ellis ruminates on the the way that the old idea that the Internet was birthing an "attention economy" has been transformed by Facebook, which has literally monetized attention, charging you money to reach the people who've asked to hear from you.

Perhaps we should have known the jig was up the day that Facebook introduced the mechanism of pricing the ability for your speech to reach every single person who actually previously selected to hear it. This is called Boost Your Post. While Facebook, obviously, is not (yet, haha) the entire internet, and they cannot be blamed for running their business as a business, it was a significant signal that the attention economy was a fragile little notion. You might even say that attempting to run an economy while not having control of the means of production is a silly idea, but an old woolly mixed-economy socialist like me can't go that far.


(Image: Pike Tolls,
Dan4th Nicholas, CC-BY