Trying to come to some understanding of all this recent discussion about attention vs. intention vs. old-school eyeballs. Cluetrain, 1999: “We are not seats or eyeballs or end users or consumers. We are human beings and our reach exceeds your grasp. Deal with it.” Doc Searles’ wife: “Sales is real. Marketing is bullshit.” Nick Bradbury: “Right now we’re witnessing the growth of services who provide aggregated attention data, and statistics suggested by this data will increasingly impact those of us – journalists and techies alike – who hope to survive in the online world.” Mary Hodder, excerpted from notes on her decision to join the board of Attention Trust:
What’s the difference between the static web and the live web? Participation.
What’s the difference between consumers and users/amateurs? Participation.
What’s the difference between attention and eyeballs? Participation.
So as we move from an eyeball-centric to an attention-centric web, and as companies realize the value of harnessing and harvesting individual attention streams, we (users/readers/consumers) stand to benefit. BUT it also becomes critical to retain control over our own databases of intention (attention?), lest they be used against us.