Dept. of Acid Trips

Facebook Can’t Be Fixed.

Facebook’s fundamental problem is not foreign interference, spam bots, trolls, or fame mongers. It’s the company’s core business model, and abandoning it is not an option.

John Battelle
Jan 5, 2018 · 5 min read
  1. Zuckerberg does the equivalent of dropping corporate acid and realizes the only way to fix Facebook is to make a massive, systemic change. He orders his team to redesign the entire Facebook product suite around a new True North: No longer will his company be driven by engagement and data collection, but rather by whether or not individual users report that they are happier after using the service. This leads to a massive rethink of the product and advertising platform, which after much debate shift from an audience model (deep data, specific to each individual) to a contextual model (not buying people, but buying the context in which those people are engaging). And given that most of an individual’s context on Facebook has to do with engaging with friends and family, well, ad inventory plunges. Maybe, just maybe, Facebook decides to charge a subscription fee, say, $10 a person per year. That alone could arguably bring in $20+ billion annually, but…let’s remember, I’m describing an acid trip.

NewCo Shift

Covering the biggest shift in business and society since the industrial revolution

John Battelle

Written by

A Founder of NewCo, Federated Media, sovrn Holdings, Web 2 Summit, Wired, Industry Standard; writer on Media, Technology, Culture, Business

NewCo Shift

Covering the biggest shift in business and society since the industrial revolution

More From Medium

More from NewCo Shift

More from NewCo Shift

More from NewCo Shift

This is how Big Oil will die

17.3K

More from NewCo Shift

More from NewCo Shift

Hard and Soft Skills in Tech

Welcome to a place where words matter. On Medium, smart voices and original ideas take center stage - with no ads in sight. Watch
Follow all the topics you care about, and we’ll deliver the best stories for you to your homepage and inbox. Explore
Get unlimited access to the best stories on Medium — and support writers while you’re at it. Just $5/month. Upgrade