What is Basic Attention Token for Dummies | BAT Review

What is Basic Attention Token?

The phrase “attention economy” may sound as if it belongs in a Black Mirror episode, but like it or not, it is what fuels the internet. The single best way to monetize online content is advertising, which can slow down load times, eat up a surprising amount of mobile data, and even track you across websites. However, Brendan Eich (Former Mozilla CEO and inventor of JavaScript) and the development team at Basic Attention Token (BAT) think that this situation can be better for everyone. They are building a cryptocurrency that quantifies your attention, transforms it into a unit of exchange, and distributes it between advertisers, publishers, and you.

While it sounds abstract and invasive—not so different from the current system—it really is neither. Basic Attention Token is simply a unit of exchange that advertisers can use to buy ad space on websites you visit. Any information about you and your preferences is stored safely on your device, so advertisers can show you targeted ads, but can’t track you. You can even control where some of the ad revenue goes. In return, advertisers get a more efficient, accurate way of reaching people with no risk of fraud.

How does Basic Attention Token work?

The BAT token exists as a crypto token on the Ethereum blockchain and is governed by a “smart contract”–a decentralized program that tells the blockchain where it should send tokens. Advertisers and publishers can join the network to buy or sell ad space.

First, advertisers buy Basic Attention Tokens on the blockchain, which gives them the right to buy space for a certain type of ad. You (the user) visit a site and get matched with their ad. Software in the background then times how long that ad is in view and how large the ad is relative to other content on the page. These two things are the most important measures of your attention, and they determine how much the advertiser will pay.

When you see the ad, the advertiser pays the site for your attention, as usual—but you get a cut as well. Depending on what type of ad it is, you could receive up to 70% of the payment versus the site’s 30%. If your attention is worth ten BAT, then, the site receives three tokens and you receive seven. Why is the advertiser paying you? Because no matter what site you’re on, according to the smart contract rules, you get to choose where some of the ad revenue goes.

If you want to support the site you’re on you can leave tips, buy access to paywalled articles, spend it on premium content, et cetera. However, if you want to keep your BAT and spend it on another site, you are free to do that as well. The developers say that in the future, you will even be able to withdraw the tokens and sell them on exchanges for other currency.

As of right now, this system only works in one browser: Brave. Brave was initially built around strong privacy and ad-blocking features, which makes it a good fit for a crypto advertising system that emphasizes user control and anonymity. The developers plan to integrate across more browsers and apps as they continue building the system; there are still a few steps to go before it is a complete product.

Recent developments

On January 17th, 2018, Brave started a “million-dollar referral program” offering five dollars worth of BAT to content creators who refer their subscribers to the browser. This is part of a big push to increase the number of users to scale the system up into a viable ads platform.

How to buy Basic Attention Token

Basic Attention Token’s coin is mostly bought and sold on Binance. You can’t buy it with fiat currency yet (USD), so here is a quick guide on how to buy Basic Attention Token starting with fiat:

1. Buy Bitcoin or Ethereum at an exchange that uses your fiat currency on Coinbase.
2. Transfer your BTC or ETH to an exchange that supports Basic Attention Token. Currently, Binance is the best choice. (Tip: if you bought BTC/ETH on Coinbase, look into using GDAX to avoid transfer fees)
3. Buy Basic Attention Token by trading your BTC/ETH for their coin, and you’re done!

Fun fact

Brendan Eich may not be a household name, but he is responsible for a significant part of the modern internet. He co-founded Mozilla, the company behind Firefox, and is the inventor of JavaScript—a programming language that is behind the scenes of almost every webpage in existence.

More Articles for You

How to Close a Wells Fargo Account Conveniently

You may have decided that it is time to close your Wells Fargo account, but have no idea how to …

Using Bitcoin as a Payment Method for Your Business

The turbulent nature of cryptocurrencies has left many people wondering whether investing in Bitcoin is worth it or not. Between …

How to Handle Money in a Frugal Lifestyle

Let’s be honest: handling money can be hard and requires a lot of self discipline, especially if you know living …

What is the Highest Credit Score You Can Get

When people think about credit cards, curiosity gets the best of them and the question of “what is the highest …

5 Ways to Boost Your Credit and Buy a House

Buying a house is an exciting experience and one of the best things that could happen to you. However, the …

Tips for Saving Money on Groceries

Who does not want to save a couple of bucks? There are no avoiding expenses for groceries so may as …