How ad-driven services without ads work:

"There are businesses, Cegłowski notes, that make money from advertising, like Yahoo and Gawker. But most businesses use advertising in a different way. Their revenue source is investor storytime:

Investor storytime is when someone pays you to tell them how rich they’ll get when you finally put ads on your site.

Pinterest is a site that runs on investor storytime. Most startups run on investor storytime.



Investor storytime is not exactly advertising, but it is related to advertising. Think of it as an advertising future, or perhaps the world’s most targeted ad.

Both business models involve persuasion. In one of them, you’re asking millions of listeners to hand over a little bit of money. In the other, you’re persuading one or two listeners to hand over millions of money."


This is what Discord is.

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> Along the way, we ended up creating one of the most hated tools in the advertiser’s toolkit: the pop-up ad.

Uh oh... *cue dramatic prairie dog*

@rick_777 (I want an animated prairie dog emoji)

And yes, I remember this.

It was baaaaaad. :blobmelt:

The one thing that saved me from all that nonsense was an early equivalent of adblock: proxomitron, a man-in-the-middle that you controlled from your PC and stripped away all nasty ads.

Sadly, the author died in a traffic accident and never published the code :blobpensive:


> Third, the advertising model tends to centralize the web. Advertisers are desperate to reach large audiences as the reach of any individual channel shrinks.

Ah hah!

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