Liz Gannes

Recent Posts by Liz Gannes

Facebook Lets Users Earn Credits by Watching Commercials

Advertising start-ups such as SocialVibe, TrialPay and Sharethrough are today announcing they are part of a new Facebook Credits program that will allow users to earn virtual currency by watching video advertising.

So called “engagement advertising” or “transactional advertising” encourages users to participate voluntarily in advertising by watching a sponsored video (a.k.a. commercial), or alternatively downloading an app, taking a poll, or interacting with a site. In exchange, users get access to things they would usually have to pay for.

Many Facebook apps, including those from top developers like Zynga and Causes, already work with companies like SocialVibe and TrialPay directly. They pay users in their app-specific virtual currency or in real dollars donated to charity.

Now, users will be able to watch video ads in order to earn Facebook’s platform-wide virtual currency, which they can then presumably spend across other Facebook apps.

Facebook said its goal with the program was to get more people to start using Facebook Credits and carry a Credits balance.

Facebook Credits are mostly spent on social games but they are increasingly accepted for other types of transactions, like videos and deals. One Facebook Credit is worth $0.10.

Please see the disclosure about Facebook in my ethics statement.

Image via Inside Facebook.


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I think the NSA has a job to do and we need the NSA. But as (physicist) Robert Oppenheimer said, “When you see something that is technically sweet, you go ahead and do it and argue about what to do about it only after you’ve had your technical success. That is the way it was with the atomic bomb.”

— Phil Zimmerman, PGP inventor and Silent Circle co-founder, in an interview with Om Malik