The full title is ‘Subprime Attention Crisis: Advertising and the Time Bomb at the Heart of the Internet’ and it’s a good description. Tim Hwang makes the case that the core advertising model driving Google, Facebook, and many of the most powerful companies on the internet is—at its heart—a multibillion dollar financial bubble. I attended a talk by Hwang and it was quite an insight to hear about the reality of model – does this advertising model really work or is it more of a case of correlation rather than causation? If you’ve ever experienced the situation where you buy something online and then are bombarded with adverts for it for weeks after, you may decide there’s a strong case for correlation i.e. you would have bought it anyway. There’s a lot more to unpack here and plenty to think about for potential solutions.
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