Tuesday, October 31, 2017

The Economics of Attention (how big is the attention economy?)

From Marginal Revolution,  October 24, 2017:
David Evans on the economics of attention:
In 2016, 437 billion hours, worth $7.1 trillion dollars, were exchanged in the attention market in the US based on conservative estimates reported above. Attention platforms paid for that time with content and then sold advertisers access to portions of that time. As a result, advertisers were able to deliver messages to consumers that those consumers would probably not have accepted in the absence of the barter of content for their time. Consumers often don’t like getting these messages. But by agreeing to receive them they make markets more competitive.
The economics of attention markets focuses on three features. First it focuses on time as the key dimension of competition since it is what is being bought and sold. Second, it focuses on content since it plays a central role in acquiring time, embedding advertising messages, and operating efficient attention platforms. And third it focuses on the scarcity of time and the implications of that for competition among attention platforms.
The $7.1 trillion estimate for the value of content seems too high....MORE