Russell Beattie writes:

Ive thought of CraigsList a bit, and why it works from a community aspect. And Ive thought about the market forces behind eBays essential monopoly on auctions here in the U.S.. But Ive never actually looked at the whole classifieds category – which is sort of defined in my mind like A place where I can list all sorts of stuff for sale or look to find a product and service directly from someone else, as physically close to me as possible so its not a pain. Yeah, its sort of a run-on loose definition, but that seems to be the general idea.

Again, newspapers have been doing this for a long time. Theres big Newspapers like the New York Times with their own classifieds, and networks of classifieds from conglomerates like Knight Ridder (though Im sure they all have local numbers to call as well). Theyre all slightly different – some do it all themselves, others license content from other national databases, etc. Because newspapers are naturally focused on a specific city or region, they seem to be the obvious place to put these sorts of ads as well. Which is why theres no classifieds to speak of really in USA Today.

Mobile Advertising

PaidContent has an interview with Jim Voelker, CEO, InfoSpace:

Q: What about advertising on mobiles? Ad listings? Ad-supported content?

A: We are bullish on mobile advertising (listings, ad-supported content, etc.). I think mobile advertising will take several forms, including a search-like form, where the user is looking for a local restaurant, finds it, calls it, and basically, conducts a transaction between the advertiser, InfoSpace and a carrier.

For more promotional kinds of advertising that is sometimes accompanied by a video, I usually point people to Web sites, such as ESPN with its InMotion, a short promo, maybe even just an image, that will come up before the piece of content to be consumed. So, I think real opportunities exist there.

As location-based services continue to roll out, we’ll see even more applications. We are very early in this game, maybe even too early. Once we start to understand how users behave when they are in certain places, you will see a lot of advertising opportunities develop.

Overall, I think there is a lot of excitement in the industry, but nobody knows exactly how it is all going to start or how specifically we’re going to get there, but everyone has a view on where the end will be.