The Economist writes:
eth Goldstein, a serial entrepreneur based in San Francisco, believes that the personal information contained in users’ click trails, online chats and transactions is something they ought to take hold of and sell themselves, generating direct payback. Attention is a valuable resource, and we’re getting to the point where it can be parsed in real time, he says. So he has co-founded a new venture called AttentionTrust.
This type of grassroots self-marketing is also the idea behind GestureBank, another anonymised data-aggregation tool started by Steve Gillmor, an American technology commentator. Users will be able to make a hell of a lot of money, Mr Gillmor predicts, by deciding which aspects of their behavioural data go into a central pool. He imagines such services will initially take hold among bloggers, who love analysing how many readers they have, who they are, and how their readership compares with that of other bloggers. Before long, he hopes, advertisers will follow with their chequebooks.