Paying Forward

Forward About Paying

What would you pay for that you don’t currently pay for? Pay with currency, that is, instead of with time, attention, or private information. How much would you pay?

Many companies, especially social media conglomerates, want to train us to overlook the costs of their service. Doing so provides them the twin benefits of destroying competition and obscuring the real costs of their service. It’s hard to compete on price against a company with massive venture capital or advertising profits to burn on “user acquisition.” Harder still when they stripmine the privacy, executive function, and lifespan of their own userbase to resell to other companies who themselves can’t judge the actual value of advertising to those users. It’s all a magic trick of externalized costs and internalized profits.

You don’t have to be the next Facebook to make something worth buying, though. People will pay for quality. People will pay to work with people instead of working against algorithms. There’s income to be made in making something worth putting a price tag on. What could you start selling today?