I come up with crazy and disruptive ideas quite often. Here’s one I thought I’d share with you.
Without getting too revolutionary on you, I’m excited about the way technology offers us great possibilities to turn whole industries upside-down, switching from top-down command-and-control models to more collective bottom-up structures that work for the common good, not for people who already have more than they need.
Open PPC would be an open-source alternative to Google’s AdSense/AdWords Display Network, but one that’s owned by us, the people, not a privately-owned, profit-making corporation (with questionable tax policies).
It’s partly also inspired by new platforms that go against the dominant market players by sharing revenues with the people who actually make something (i.e. the content), like tsü, and also that refuse to track user behaviour, like Duck Duck Go (my preferred search engine now).
How OpenPPC Would Work
Anyway, the principle works like this (very similar to how the Display Network functions):
- The system crawls the pages on the domain, figures out the subject matter, and serves up ads.
- Advertisers bid on ads using the regular style of auction system, and prepay a budget.
- When a website visitor clicks on an ad, the advertiser’s account is billed accordingly.
So far, so familiar.
- But, other than registering the most basic data to prove a click took place, the platform stores no other user activity data.
- That means there’s no remarketing (where you visit a website that tags you with a Facebook or Google cookie, and then you spookily keep seeing ads for the site you visited following you around).
- What’s more, why shouldn’t 90% (or more) of the amount paid by the advertiser go to the website owner? (AdSense pays about 68%)
- Another idea could be that everyone’s ad should have the opportunity to get seen and clicked, not just the ads belonging to the richest advertisers.
- Maybe if the project were open-source, anyone could host their own ad network? There are lots of opportunities.
I’d love to hear your thoughts. Maybe we could start this as a real collaborative project, using crowdfunding to get it going in 2015.