We have issues with NFTs, from the fact that they’re basically a shell game to their negative environmental impact. One thing that we can’t deny, however, is that they’re offering publishers a rare chance for a genuinely new revenue source. Since Esther wrote about Playboy selling Rabbitars last week, The Economist has gone public with its own story about selling its cover as an NFT.
The top line figure is that it raised $422,000 for charity, demonstrating the vast sums that these tokens can be sold for: “The market for NFTs, which are records of digital media on a blockchain, is burgeoning. Last year it was worth just $340m. In August the total value of NFTs held on the Ethereum blockchain was in the region of $14bn, according to DappRadar, a research firm.”
The article concludes with a prediction that “the use of the tokens, already evolving, could expand well beyond collectables, into the realm of high finance.” We’re not betting against that – but we are concerned that publishers will run the NFT craze into the ground before they can really profit from it.
We’re seeing more of this. A subscription perk at a number of publications is the ability to chat directly with journalists. Now USA TODAY is attempting to get in on the action by allowing audiences to text its fact-checkers. We can see noooo way that it will backfire.
Hey, this is great! You always need a commercial imperative to get anything to change – and the fact that some of the biggest, most legit publishers out there are seeing serious requests for advertisers for climate change coverage means we’ll definitely get more of it in the future.
Google has reimbursed MailOnline after it turned off advertising for its US homepage. It cited human error and ‘derogatory content’ – which can extend to racist comments below the line. Regardless of how right Google’s decision was, it is undeniably worrisome that it can turn ads off without citing anything specific.
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