Taking up Mark's offer

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Taking up Mark's offer

Internet at large, Matthew Garcia, 14. January 2019

This week, Mark Zuckerberg wrote the following about his upcoming challenge for 2019:


Well said Mark.

Yes, we totally agree with you. 2018 was a pivotal year in tech, and we as an industry have to do everything in our power to win back the trust of the public by working on the right things. And we would love to participate in the dialogue.

One of the most fundamental and challenging questions the web is facing is how do you keep online content accessible to the public while successfully monetizing it? Or:

How do you sustainably fund online content?

Funding online content has historically been a challenge for the web, and the solution has not been found. Since the emergence of the first ever banner ad in 1994, online advertising has been the prevailing method to monetize content, platforms and apps. But users have opted out of traditional online ad formats by the hundreds of millions – which Doc Searls called “the biggest boycott in human history.”

Ad fraud, privacy concerns and perceived invasiveness are just a few of the issues that have eroded trust throughout the ecosystem. And this poses an existential threat to the publishing industry and beyond.

In recent years other models have appeared and proven to be successful (e.g. Patreon, subscriptions, micropayments), but we are a long way from finding a truly sustainable model beyond online advertising.

We would love to invite you to talk about this in-depth. We are positive other key stakeholders of the publishing industry, ad blocking industry, ad tech industry, digital rights organizations and others would be happy to join this productive session, too.

Mark Zuckerberg