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Thursday, October 06, 2005

Paying (for) Attention

For awhile now I've been watching a parallel analytics field getting started and I believe we ought to be discussing the implications within the web analytics world. I'm talking about attention. It's based on a specification that the fine folks at Technorati started, with many others joining them in the definition process, but no analytics vendors as far as I can tell.

In short, the idea behind attentiontrust is that my analytics data (called attention data) is mine. Here are the "rights" as defined by attention.org:

Property: You own your attention and can store it wherever you wish. You have CONTROL.
Mobility:You can securely move your attention wherever you want whenever you want to. You have the ability to TRANSFER your attention.
Economy: You can pay attention to whomever you wish and receive value in return. Your attention has WORTH.
Transparency: You can see exactly how your attention is being used. You can DECIDE who you trust.

Expect to see some interesting work around this area. A local Portland company, Attensa, has released a slick RSS reader for Outlook, and is working on other tools to help folks manage their feeds and leverage the attention spec.

At Web2.0 this week, the attentiontrust folks released a Firefox recorder extension that sends your attention data to the attention service you choose. It seems clear that this is an early attempt to get this tool out to kick the tires a bit. The tool sends your "clickstream" data to a "trusted" service. The only service available currently is with acmeattentionservice (who I believe should add a bit more to their website if they want to be perceived as trusted!).

I'll talk more about the underlying technology in a subsequent post. If you'd like to understand more about what the founders of attentiontrust are thinking, check out this very long but quite informative article.

Note too that Paul Miller and Michael Arrington over at Tech Crunch have written about attentiontrust's efforts this week.

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  1. Hi.

    The Gillmor Gang podcast recently had a great "cast" on the attention idea, definitely worth checking out. You can find it in iTunes...

    Also, and only slightly related, The MAKE Magazine podcast has seemed to morph into a "distributing the future" podcast, which is really excellent. cast 2, which i listened to this morning, has a small discussion with Doc Searles on the issue of "identity" and how owning our online identities is a big idea.

    Dunno, just thought I'd share.



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