Dow Jones Partners With Brave Browser To Trial Basic Attention Token

  • The Dow Jones Media Group has partnered up with Brave to offer users premium content and test its basic attention token.
  • Barron's and Marketwatch will become verified publishers on BAT's platform.
  • A limited number of users will receive access to premium content from Dow Jones Media Group.

In a thus far revolutionary move, the Dow Jones Media Group, a subsidiary of Dow Jones and publisher of Barron’s, has signed a deal with the ad-blocking Brave browser. The deal is set to see Dow Jones’ publications become verified publishers, potentially allowing users to pay for premium content with its Basic Attention Token (BAT).

Two years ago, multiple publications, including the Wall Street Journal, itself published by Dow Jones, dubbed Brave’s ad blocking manoeuvres “illegal”. Aligning themselves with the New York Times and Washington Post, it seemed that such a stance was invariably set in stone. 

Now, all of this has seemingly changed, as the Dow Jones Media Group is currently offering those who download Brave 24 months of free access to its Barrons.com website and/or to a premium MarketWatch newsletter. 

Explaining their new position, Barron’s senior vice president, Daniel Bernard, said:

“As global digital publishers, we believe it is important to continually explore new and emerging technologies that can be used to build quality customer experiences.”

Daniel Bernard

Dow Jones Media Group is not the only publisher who’s now on board. According to Brave’s Chief Executive, Brendan Eich: “Our discussions have become much better over the years. We’ll have other big publishers we’re announcing as partners.”  

Brave is unique in that it not only blocks ads, but also has software that tracks online behaviour and passes it on to other entities. Now used by over two million people every month, its popularity shows just how seriously internet users take their security and privacy.

Brave’s BAT Token

Brave’s intention is not to put a stop to advertising entirely, but to deliver ads in a more privacy-sensitive way. This will eventually mean ad revenue for the publishers who invest in it, and with this in mind, a cryptocurrency-based payment system already exists.

The browser’s Basic Attention Token (BAT) is set to allow advertisers to not only pay publishers, but also subsume a portion of the proceeds and distribute them amongst all who use Brave. Although said system is not yet completely functional, publishers are already able to earn some revenue through users’ BAT payments.

Such payments are distributed monthly by Brave, who gives the lion’s share to sites with the most activity. As part of this scheme, publishers, YouTubers and Twitch video streamers can all sign up free of charge to mark themselves as being eligible to receive tokens form users.   

Dow Jones Media Group will now become BAT verified publishers as a result of the deal signed on Wednesday, meaning it will be possible to pay for premium content with Brave’s BAT tokens.

Advantages of Securing IoT Devices with Blockchain, Explained By Andreas Antonopoulos

Andreas Antonopoulos, a widely-followed Bitcoin (BTC) specialist, has argued that using blockchain to solve internet of things (IoT)-related security issues may not have any significant benefits.

Antonopoulos, whose comments came during a recent Q&A session, published on May 17, 2019, said it’s possible that a traditional database management system could work just as well (as a blockchain) when it comes to securing IoT-based applications.

Logging Information From IoT Devices Using Blockchain-based Systems Could Be Beneficial

However, Antonopoulos acknowledged that distributed ledger technology (DLT)-based systems could be useful in cases where “information is logged from IoT devices in a way that it maintains that information so that it can be changed in the future … so this [would be] an immutability benefit.”

He added that many people use the term blockchain to refer to databases that are able to register digital signatures (PKIs). Antonopoulos clarified:

I think that it’s important to clarify that the purpose of a blockchain is more than recording digital signatures, [or digital timestamping]. We’ve had PKI for 25 years. There’s nothing new there and it’s not particularly interesting to take a PKI database and make it public - unless you do something with it like … building a decentralized consensus system so you can have immutability.

He continued:

And then again, what problem are you solving? What are the problems in IoT security [that you’re trying to address?] A lot of people are trying to mash these two terms (IoT and blockchain) together.

According to him, there are great security risks involved when implementing IoT-based systems.

Solar Energy Trading On Blockchains

Responding to a question about the potential benefits of using an ERC-20 compliant token, instead of just using ether (ETH), when conducting solar energy trading on the blockchain, Antonopoulos first clarified that ETH is generated by mining on the Ethereum network.

He further noted that “if you have an ERC-20 token that’s related to solar energy, then perhaps you can mine, or mint, or issue that token in response to people generating energy. So, they can earn that token directly when producing energy. But the only way you can really measure how much energy somebody is producing in order to issue a token is to buy and use that energy. And in that case, [you] could just pay in ether.”

Antonopoulos also argued that tokens are not required in all cases and that users should exercise caution when new projects are trying to offer a native token.

“Markets Are Just Human Behavior”

The data communications and distributed systems graduate from the University College London also pointed out that blockchains “operate as markets” and they operate by “using markets.” For example, there’s a market for cryptocurrency mining which is based on a blockchain network, Antonopoulos explained.

There are also markets, Antonopoulos noted, for proof-of-work (PoW)-related mining profitability and “there are currency markets within the cryptocurrency space.”

He added:

All of these markets exist because of blockchains. [Therefore,] markets are a critical application of blockchain technology. Blockchains will create better, more fair, more transparent, more open markets...wherever markets are needed. Interestingly enough, even in places where markets are needed but not wanted….[For instance,] drug markets...Why? Because drug markets are [just] markets...Markets require two things in order to happen: supply and demand....Markets are just human behavior.