To clarify, do you mean a million monthly Brave users? Or just a million monthly users in general? 10 cents a day might actually be a lot if you were only getting one or two Brave users a month.
Isn't it possible to somehow look at user agents and do a raw count with some JS?
It's worth noting that Creators also have a referral program whereby $5 in BAT can be earned for each user brought to the Brave platform. brave.com/refer
Thank you for your incredible patience and participation. We hope to see positive developments on the bitlicense front soon. Please do let us know if there is ever anything we can do for you in the interim.
Our future phase (Apollo) blockchain work will move more txns on-chain but not solve all regulatory problems. No blockchain can do that unless you are using p2p directly, and then on the current big chains you don't have anonymity or low fees. This may change, we're working on it.
We use platforms which do not ask for our ID, and we would prefer if you would not reduce the probability of Brave users donating to us because they think those BAT tokens will reach us.
Yes, unverified creators are marked as such, but a donation call in the browser UI is a powerful default, more so than the donation service preferred by the creator, which can only be shown as a web page.
Not verifying ID almost certainly causes a violation of American, British and European anti-money laundering code.
Disclaimer: I am not a lawyer. This is not legal advice.
> Passport and/or national driver’s license or government-issued identification card to verify your identity
(from https://www.blockchain.com/legal/privacy). That's consistent with every other exchange I've used.
Brave would be able to offer BAT withdrawals for creators in a legally sound way.
If you want to send p2p on a big blockchain, knock yourself out. This will do nothing to support the publishers you can see at batgrowth.com (more all the time, see batgrowth_bot on Twitter). It's a fine thing to do when you are sure of the destination address, and willing to fingerprint yourself on-chain. We never "insert ourselves" there -- no one can. That is the beauty of it. But it doesn't solve all problems.
Sure it's only a few bucks a month but look at that in terms of your user base. What are you going to assume your marketshare of Brave users is? For context consider the marketshare of Firefox is in the single digits. Brave is probably a fraction of that. If we assume Brave's popularity is 10% of that of Firefox, that'd give you an expected userbase of < 1% Brave users.
That'd be $3/month for, at most, 10k users. If your entire userbase was on brave that'd be $300/month for doing literally nothing. It's really quite a nice model.
Actually this also understates the profit per person for another reason. In Brave you have to opt in to the site rewards system. So you're likely not only seeing a fraction of your userbase paying you but a fraction of your Brave users.
Either way, it's really not worth the time and effort to set it up right now unless you're a huge site like wikipedia and you don't have any ad revenue to lose.
I do think it will be interesting what this does to donations to wikipedia. It would make sense, I think, that Brave users may donate less per user overall as they feel they are contributing by using Brave.
"Looks like 26 people donated 50.35BAT in 25 days. comScore has 100 page/day browsing average. Assume 1<=N<100 http://aternos.com pages per day for all 26 ppl & all unblock ads there: at most .65N x PageCPM <> 50.35 BAT or PageCPM <> 77.46BAT / N =~ $20/N. I believe BAT wins."
Again, disclaimers: rough, small-N, lots of other problems. We will do proper case studies as we can. But assuming we would max out at $300 to you is unjustified.
It'd be quite interesting to know what your aggregate CPM is. One way you could probably determine brave users is by contrasting raw user agents against your analytics data. The discrepancy there is going to be some mixture of Brave and those running other things that also block analytics like uBlock. But it should at least you give you a very rough ballpark CPM that's probably going to be much more reliable than e.g. a survey.
One other important figure that Brave could probably roughly answer (but also probably won't) would be what percent of Brave users opt in ads.
Brave fixed a few of the complaints I had in the last few months with logins, header editing, and verifying with Uphold, so I've updated my linked forum post to reflect that.
I think it will be interesting to see how Brave's concept/tech will continue to evolve as it matures and has some traction.
By default no ads are shown.
Can't find anything on the origin of the company name, I assume that's just hyperbole.
Brave is named for its users, who have to stand up to the surveillance status quo, sometimes at a price in lowing their shields or otherwise tangling with anti-ad-blockers.
The last thing the world needs is a predatory vendor trying to force itself somewhere it's not needed. Its non existing market share is the proof.
1. On ESR first time it loads two pages load including
You then find first party cookies are set by Google Analytics
In the EU this would breach the ePrivacy Directive - as there is neither consent or information supplied in advance. Privacy is not just about information captured about you, but about privacy of what you have stored on your electronic devices.
Note: https://ico.org.uk/about-the-ico/news-and-events/news-and-bl... Myth 2: Analytics cookies are strictly necessary so we do not need consent
2. If you then type "privacy" into the address bar, it loads https://www.google.com/search?q=privacy&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&cl... directing users into the most privacy invasive service on the internet with no advance warning. I now have a wealth of Google cookies from their search domain, but there are also cookies set for DoubleClick and Adservices.
I'm now enrolled into surveillance capitalism and all I did was open Firefox for the first time, type "privacy" and press enter.
Mozilla talk a lot about privacy, but their products and websites don't live up to the privacy standards we need and if anything they're on the wrong side of the fence when it comes to acting on privacy - they still make things worse and not better; although it has to be acknowledged that they have improved a lot with the tracking protection features that have slowly been making their way into Firefox.
You might find this interesting to read
1. Mozilla only enabled Google Analytics after signing a contract with Google that that data would not be fed into Google's models. There's no reason to believe Google would violate that legal agreement.
2. The Twitter thread you linked is by a Brave employee. It should be judged by the facts it shows, but is good context to keep in mind w.r.t. their presentation.
For Mozilla to use GA instead of self-hosted Matomo is odd to me as a founder of mozilla.org (none are left at Mozilla now, FYI). We do the latter at Brave. Is it just for convenience?
Do you have a better solution? I'm not asking to be glib, I actually want a browser that does a better job of protecting my privacy.
Whilst I have reservations about Brave, from a privacy standpoint they appear to be more trustworthy and some of the actions they are involved with, like complaints to regulators are far beyond anything we've seen of Mozilla - sure they may have corporate motives, but right now they appear to align far better with consumer privacy.
There are forks of Firefox that are trying to improve on delivery of privacy
I am not wholly comfortable using Brave because of its dependency on Chromium, too much of a dependency on a single web rendering engine reminds me of IE days.
I would suggest to anyone, install them both and more, you might love browsing the web in emacs (someone must) - if you find a website that doesn't work on Firefox and you need Chrome, then why not use Brave instead?
Personally I'm trying both, I also bought a Librem Laptop so I have PureBrowser too and I'm not afraid to throw some of my money and inconvenience at products that are better at protecting my privacy: for techies we can all do this with relative ease. For non-techies, which is where we really need the sea of change (and who are unlikely to read this), then we can advise them towards Apple's products and make them aware of products like Brave so it can be their "backup" browser if not their first choice - not perfect, but I'd prefer my family to browse using Safari, Firefox (with privacy settings I have to sit down and sort out for them) or Brave; than Chrome.
There's a lot for me to think about in your post, and most of it I agree with, but I wanted to comment on this bit. While I agree that Firefox has made some very problematic decisions over the years, Brave is far worse in my opinion. My biggest 3 objections are here:
Would you mind inlining your biggest 3 objections? Thanks.
Looking into this only briefly, it didn't take long to find a lot of very questionable decisions made by Brave:
1. They're positioning themselves as both an advertiser and a privacy advocate, which strikes me as more of a strategy for bootstrapping revenue than a trustworthy moral position. The entire point of crypto micropayments is to pay for content with crypto rather than attention/privacy. Why should I view Brave's ads rather than the other ads on the internet from advertisers who also claim their ads respect privacy? The fact that Brave has decided to get into bed with advertisers at all shows they're committed to profit, not to users: micropayments are just a way to diversify for Brave, which will quickly fall to the wayside if it fails to provide the revenue they want.
2. The entire concept of a Brave Verified Publisher stinks. It positions Brave as a censor. If this system takes off, then suddenly Brave has control over who gets paid for content on the internet, and can censor content they don't like. And this isn't hypothetical, they plan to do this: their TOS explicitly contains a code of conduct which contains a long list of things they will terminate your account for: they promise to use their power as censors to enforce of US copyright/patent law and also a wide variety of subjective social norms. This also shows their commitment to being an advertiser rather than an application that serves users: if you're serving users then you let them pay for the content they want to pay for, but if you're serving advertisers, then you can't let advertisers brands be seen as supporting questionable content.
3. BAT based in Ethereum seems to be basically a way to ride the wave of cryptocurrency hype while still positioning themselves as a central authority/middleman. If they weren't trying to position themselves as a middleman, they would just make the micropayments in Ether directly, or better yet, in a cryptocurrency that doesn't have a history of forking the blockchain to fix an bug in a major users' contract. If they weren't trying to ride cryptocurrency hype, they'd just allow micropayments via a much-simpler-and-more-reliable REST API or similar since they're already the central authority anyway.
I don't think we can trust Brave with our privacy or attention. I don't think we can trust Brave with the decision of who gets paid for content. I don't think we need Brave as a middleman to pay content publishers. I don't like the state of how content is paid for on the internet, but I don't think Brave is the solution.
It's disappointing to me that Wikipedia has decided to associate their name with Brave's. A big part of why I respect Wikipedia is their long-standing policy of keeping independent from advertisers, and it seems naive of them to have not realized that Brave is an advertiser. I can understand why Wikipedia has made this decision, but I still think it is a compromise of Wikipedia's values, and I hope they'll reverse their decision in the future.
1. Ad spend last year was over $100M in the US alone, ~$300M globally. Heading toward $1T globally. Users subscribing or paying out of goodwill won't cover this if we block it all and corner the market. We are doing anonymous and private ads (also donations and subscriptions, note well), no conflict with user in data or revenue share. Read my comments here, e.g., https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=20841558. For you to claim a conflict, you have to show we make more than the user, cheat the user, or somehow steal or leak data to our advantage.
2. We are in the middle phase of a multiyear roadmap, where the last phase will distribute domain verification to many oracles, if we can't bake it into validators on-chain. If you know of an existing blockchain solution, please lay it on us. Also for handling OFAC and other KYC regulations (where we use Uphold today). We cannot intermediate ad revshares, and no blockchain today can either. We do not censor, our test for domain ownership or channel control is objective. If you think we won't get on to phase 3 of our roadmap, fine -- but don't use your speculations as if they were facts.
3. Here is a chart from end of 2017 showing relative volatility. BAT was 2nd least volatile above USDT, we beat Bitcoin and Ether. But we also have other advantages via BAT, including our user growth pool. If you discount that then you are arguing we should find a billionaire to replace it with Ether out of the grace of his or her charity. Who might that person be? Your argument here is cheap unless it's you.
I don't find these to be objections based on reason so much as misunderstandings or hostile speculations that we will fail. You aren't required to agree with us, we're not imposing any system on you. If you don't like BAT, just use Brave with its default settings. If you don't like Brave, there are lots of other browsers. If you have rational arguments against any bug or design flaw in our intentional work to replace surveillance with privacy tech for donating and advertising, I'm all ears.
A "conflict of interest" doesn't necessarily imply that you've done anything wrong yet, it merely says that the incentives are strongly in favor of you doing something wrong. In my experience, that means that when the cards are on the table you will do the wrong thing, not because you're a bad person or anything, but because you don't want to give up your funding and business.
It may just be that making a lot of money and serving users are fundamentally incompatible. And anyone who actually wants to prioritize serving users over making a lot of money needs to at least be open to that possibility. I really hope they aren't incompatible, for both your sake and mine--I'd like to be rich as much as anyone.
2. This is a non-reason. Domain ownership is already verified by certificate authorities, and there's no reason anyone should trust your centralized authority more than CAs centralized authority. In the very best case, where you do exactly what you're claiming you're going to do and allow other oracles, you've pointlessly reinvented CAs. But you haven't gotten there yet, so right now it just looks like you've created a CA system where you're the only CA, which is objectively worse.
If you want a blockchain solution, fixing the bugs in Namecoin would be a start, although admittedly that technology has yet to play out in practice. It's possible a similar system could be implemented on top of BAT. The difficulty here is that you'd be reinventing the DNS system in tandem.
Let's be clear here, your TOS says you can censor people based on subjective criteria. So if you claim "we do not censor", why don't you say that where it's legally binding?
3. So if you're arguing volatility is the issue, why didn't you just use USD? If you needed funding--again, that's your problem, not one users care about. You don't get a free pass on technology decisions that harm users just because they helped you get funding.
I am genuinely sad that corporations have proven themselves untrustworthy so many times that I can't trust you. As I've said elsewhere, you seem like a decent person with good intentions.
I’m aware of Namecoin, whose Wikipedia page says
“A 2015 study found that of the 120,000 domain names registered on Namecoin, only 28 were in use.
Onename co-founder Muneeb Ali on 12 September 2015 at the Blockstack Summit 2015 stated that the Namecoin network is not decentralized and the mining group Discus Fish controls 60-70% of its hashing power.”
I was at the 2015 Blockstack Summit and can vouch.
I already noted we will distribute if not decentralize publishers verification. Namecoin can’t do YouTube or other UGC accounts, as we do. Handshake might pan out for domains, we are in touch. In our current Gemini phase we have to comply with laws, but we won’t kick out or unverify a site or channel based on legal content it hosts. Our rep would be trashed if we did.
This may be where we part company. I’m well aware of conflicts of interest and the difference between intentions and outcomes from Mozilla and prior experience. Brave nevertheless has put its reputation at stake, with open source and incremental work to decentralize as much as possible. We may fail for lots of reasons, but going bad and trying to steal from our users is highly unlikely. It would be quickly defeated. This is by design.
Come to think of it, I would expect the same move from Apple as well, on Safari.
Presumably, the real problem is that this would be against Google’s terms of the agreement between google and. moz, but - at least technically - there is no reason to throw away access to google if that’s seen to be a desirable default.
Of course - I’m guessing that google is gonna add its own tracking variables to URLs, so any search result returned by google really is going to be suspect regardless of what we do.
It's nothing but opinionated. You can't honestly call this a "fact" and go on to claim that HN is hypocritical. That's... is there a word for hypocrisy about hypocrisy?
(The first point made is not even that bad, it's just that quagmire following it which dilutes the whole thing)
So the fact here is that Mozilla made that choice to be in bed with Google.
The sad irony is Chrome on Android will insist on asking users for the default search engine choice (in the EU at least https://www.techspot.com/news/81273-google-android-users-eur... ).
Maybe think about it another way. Imagine Greenpeace defaulted to offering to book supporters private planes to get to every protest. It is this nature of extreme distance from organisational values that Mozilla is expressing when it defaults to Google search.
This isn't that hard (except for doing without the big bucks, which is hard: Brave is building up small revenue to large, not profitable yet -- again, we pay the user >= what we make, 70% of gross revenue for user-private ads, 15% for publisher partnered ads [not yet launched]).
They just want the Google $$$, privacy be damned.
In my opinion, this conflict of interest between users and Mozilla's search revenue share held back tracking protection in Firefox over the years.
Meanwhile Brave has a transparent rate card, where we pay the user 70% of the gross revenue for user-private ads, and 15% for publisher ads (not yet deployed; the publisher makes 70% and we take same as the user). So we get <= what users get, and will fail if our users don't like the private/anonymous ad model enough to opt in at sufficient scale that we can cover our costs.
Good luck pressuring Mozilla to cut its top exec's pay from seven figures. Your words are empty.
On “racist”, you are wrong. But you seem to have trouble with the truth, so I will stop here.
I commented in another thread. This is one area where Mozilla has failed. It should have been the goto engine for projects like Electron or Brave or even MS Edge instead of Chromium. But the last time I looked Mozilla was not very friendly towards developers who want to use their engine.
I don’t know if FF has changed in this regard but it takes a long time to get rid of a perception of poor performance and this should have been their first priority long ago (which seems to be the case with their Rust work and GeckoView/mobile preview browser). In addition to how far they were behind Chrome security wise for so long, such as isolated tabs.
But I agree, this should have been Mozilla's niche that they owned. Owning the early adopters is critical to mainstream success IMO. We're the ones that regular people listen to when making tech choices.
Curious: what are some of the shortfalls you see in Chromium?
Before I joined Brave, the desktop browser was originally using Gecko (from Firefox). Ultimately, there were some problems and the decision was made to move to Chromium. On iOS, Brave is forked from Firefox though
You can check out more detail on Reddit where folks asked why FF was not used (which has links to more detailed info):
That it's a Google-controlled project. Seriously, that's it. I have no reason to believe Google has my best interest at heart.
Don't turn that around and say "Oh, you think Mozilla is looking out for you?" because I don't. I just trust Google less.
The question you should be asking is whether you trust Brave to vet the source code and remove anything that seems like a problem.
Brave is (and you are) saying I should trust Brave because they're going to rip out Google's tracking and insert their own instead. No thank you. I'll stick with Firefox and whatever chicanery Mozilla is up to.
There isn’t any whataboutism in the post you are replying to.
Brave Ads are opt-in and client-based. There is no server side tracking of users or data in the clear. I can say more on how all this works, but I will pause here. Search for "catalog" elsewhere to find another comment explaining it a bit more.
The page goes over (high level) how the project is built and links to patches where functionality was disabled or modified (ex: proxied, etc)
I would trust a closed source project that has been thoroughly and extensively vetted by a third-party auditor I trust far more than an open source project that has no audit for me to reference.
As I am not a professional security auditor, my ability to understand the minutiae of developer decisions (intentional and unintentional) in some multi-million-LOC project is basically a limit approaching zero. My looking at the source code to give myself a false sense of security would only increase my risk, IMO.
It's like a restaurant tells you "yeah we have a clean kitchen, you can go take a quick look yourself!" and it's like, do you know to check that water and disinfectant buckets can't be within x feet of each other? To temp every fridge and warmer to ensure no danger zones? To monitor glove usage and hair net usage? And a thousand other things?
Being open source basically means that a nice auditor could do some audit work for free to help the community, but that's about it from my perspective.
Unless some of you are actively code reviewing the entirety of Chromium prior to launching any build of it ???
LetsEncrypt is an example of a non-profit open source based CA.
Before you could argue that the open source Chromium was largely immune to Google's various small bad behaviours, but when they make such a large close-minded move, at a certain point you can't keep supporting the platform as a whole when they are so hostile to the open internet. Even if it's indirect support.
Also, it can't be ignore that Firefox's recent move towards parity with Chrome has played a big role in giving people the option to even switch.
You mean the platform that specifically disallows competing browser engines, making Firefox just a shell over a Safari-enabled web view and that can't even access Safari's content blockers? The only Firefox that's not running a Firefox engine under the hood? That Firefox?
Given you're a developer for Brave, it's not possible for you to not know this, therefore your statement is misleading at best.
The pitfalls of Chromium are obvious... it gives Google the power to impose on the market whatever engine feature they want, they are the ones defining the web standards and there's nothing Brave can do about it because Brave does not have the capacity to maintain a full fork, or to fight for web standards, just like it doesn't have the capacity to build a browser without piggybacking on somebody else.
Don't get me wrong, nowadays even Microsoft admitted total defeat, but then Brave should recognize its total dependence on Google and its continued goodwill.
We do have upstream contributions to Chromium. Nowhere near as many as Microsoft (we may only have a few), but we do try to contribute back when possible
What do you mean? Brave is based on Chromium, which is open source. Google can't stop people from using it.
(Disclosure: I work for Google)
 Your categorization doesn't match what I've seen. Microsoft has been driving substantial changes as Edge moves onto it.
Basically, you guys are in a weird space where your decisions aren't looked at purely from a technical lens, but also an ideological one.
But don't let browsers pretend to be neutral runtimes for the terrible third party scripts on which surveillance advertising depends. They are not neutral. The big-4 browsers in the west apart from Apple are partly or fully captured by $100B ad businesses.
We are all in a weird space. Best to fight back at the endpoint with the right browser. Could be Safari, Firefox, or Chrome with opt outs and uBO and other defenses (but risks remain in Chrome especially), if you are not game for Brave.
In my mind, considering the push you’re making, you’d validate that vanilla chromium meets the requirements to achieve said push. If it didn’t, it’d be a non-starter and you’d have went a different route (leveraging aspects of Firefox’s stack maybe if, again, it met requirements).
but they don't anymore ? So if someone lives and breathes policeman life and then becomes a drug dealer, is it just like buying drugs from a policeman ?
Chromium without Google tracking is dominant, this is just a fact (it will change some day; not soon). The best way to counter this is not to die on the wrong hill (engine wars) right now -- it is to go a level up and fight for privacy and user sovereignty where Google cannot defend: blocking all tracking, paying users 70% of user private ad revenue.
This is a spreadsheet I'd be interested to see. Was this compiled before or after Firefox supported WebExtensions?
IE was also free as in beer.
We don't do third party ads. We block third party tracking which takes out third party and most first party ads. We also block fingerprinting, cryptomining, and other threats.
Are the ads hosted by the websites your users visit? If not, they're third-party ads, with you being that third party.
> Lotta green handles fibbing about us here.
Oh don't worry, I'd make the exact same comment from my other (non-green, thousands of karma) profile, I just like to occasionally switch aliases.
If you insist on a reductionistic definition that rules out anything other than a static ad on the same site as the publisher, you will get stuck trying to improve the Web and how it is funded. I understand objecting to all ads other than static images that click through into same origin forms, or whatever, but that won’t pay the bills for most publishers.
Brave is similar to Opera. It's not a mainstream browser, and they also want to make money. Dipping into publisher revenue and using some broken BAT crypto currency to reward publishers is not the way to do it. The currency itself is mostly useless and unstable, plus you will be making peanuts compared to even the lowest CPM country in AdSense.
What we need is an ad provider that provides a meaningful experience to advertisers and non-invasive ads to publishers. An entirely context-based, tracking-less, controlled (iframed and sandboxed).
A browser is a user-agent and it should stay that way. I like certain things Brave is doing (such as proxying Google Safe Browsing API requests), but for all this BAT nonsense, I would still stick with Mozilla.
That's like saying "all we need is some honest and wise politicians and some smart non-corrupt government officials". Excellent idea, too bad nobody figured out how to get some and have them stay that way. Until we find a magic way to do it, we should assume the way it is now is the one we'd have to deal with, and deal with it in ways that are available presently, not imaginary.
The problem with tracking ad-tech is the sum of the massive conflicts of interest it creates: advertiser vs. user vs. intermediary vs. publisher. Brave aligns with users first by paying them 70% of the user ad revenue, with publishers who partner with us who get 70% while the user gets 15% (so 1/ we pay 70% to owner of ad slot; 2/ we always pay user >= what we take). We then help users support creators, anonymously and easily, not only website publishers but especially youtubers and others. See https://batgrowth.com/ and sign up -- we pay $5USD in BAT per new 30+ day user you refer. https://brave.com/refer
By aligning with users first, we are confident great creators will do well as their users support them with automated contributions, pinned subscriptions, and tips. Who loses? The ad-tech intermediaries we block. You already give your data to your browser. Don't let it be a blind slave of the middlemen. They are not needed.
AFAIK this is not true. To get in-page ads, you (the page owner) have to opt-in and will be paid over 60% of the profit.
Of course, we do not replace ads without publishers as paid partners. That would be wrong, also legally unsound whether you think it wrong or not. Thanks for pointing this out.
If true, this should be at the top. Brave should be sued into the ground for doing this.
I'm fine with ad blocking, but this is outright larceny.
Brendan Eich has repeatedly said that they do not replace ads: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=20831627
For what it's worth, I find Brendan's position on homosexuality to be on the wrong side of history and on the wrong side of faithfulness (I do not intend to put words in his mouth, but this comment feels like a strong acceptance that he has feelings or opinions about gay people that are hard to rationally, and intelligently defend) 
I want to make it clear I have no stake in protecting Brendan or Brave (I work for an analytics company!), but parroting bullshit you heard, or misrepresenting a company that affects your business is not taking the high ground even when the thing you are shitting on is led by a person whose position many people find despicable.
 Brendan Eich says, "As for homophobe, I reject your definition. Call me what you want there" // https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=20792783
Thanks for calling out parroting bullshit based on personal dislike or animus. But FWIW, I don’t see evidence of Ayesh doing that. Peace.
You've been doing a great job of defending Brave, I wish you didn't have to, especially to the HN crowd.
They want to display ads while respecting user privacy, which is nice from a user point of view, but do advertisers actually want that rather than being able to target 35-40 years old in Ohio that are using shaving products twice a week ?
Once a day, your device downloads an aggregate catalog of many ad options to be studied locally. If/when an ad is found that fits your interests (as inferred by your browsing habits), the ad is displayed as an OS notification and 70% of the ad revenue is deposited into your in-situ wallet.
So on the topic of targeting, Brave is able to deliver a better experience for Advertisers and Users, without the need to leak user information across the Web. The on-device ML bits learn about their user over time, delivering a better experience with maturity.
I hope that helps!
> The machine-learning bits study your browsing habits in a private, non-leaky manner.
I think everyone's been around the internet long enough to know that nothing is private forever and everything has leaks. Relevant: https://twitter.com/briankrebs/status/1045091640480804864
Brave aims to sustain the roads that grant you access to that scenery. For some users, they are able to pay a bit out of pocket (depositing their own tokens). For others, they can take advantage of a private advertising system that finds relevant ads, while paying the user 70%. This allows users to passively support the roads, if you will.
Unlike billboards down the side of the highway (which, I agree, aren't pleasant to see), only the users who wish to see ads are shown ads. And they always determine how many are shown (which is not the case with billboards). Brave Ads are tuned over time, too. As a user engages the app, the ads will become more and more relevant (unlike billboards). All that said, the default experience is (and will remain) an ad-free experience.
To your Krebs citation, he is absolutely correct. Give your data to somebody, and it's likely they'll lose it, leak it, or sell it. That's why Brave avoids your data as best we can. Brave Ads takes place _on your machine_, where your data naturally lives. You don't entrust us or anybody else with it.
I hope this helps!
The only thing that will opt into this crap are the selenium bots I write to farm some Brave cash or whatever you're calling it, until I realize that the AWS fees are more than the Brave cash I'm getting and shut them off for good.
You are entirely misinterpreting the Brave engineer's good faith argument. The argument wasn't that billboards somehow pay for roads. You introduced that analogy, and the reply showed where your anology falls apart. The argument was that unlike roads, most websites aren't funded by taxes and won't be for the foreseeable future. The engineer also points out some ways Brave ads are different from billboards: they are opt-in, they are personalized, they give you useful tokens for your attention, etc.
It's impossible to ignore that every major browser is subsidized by either user tracking or OS sales. Even the privacy focused Firefox, which I use and love, is funded almost completely by Google ads.
And lastly, one great thing about Brave is it's completely (besides maybe Widevine, which isn't their fault) FOSS, so you are free to fork it and remove the Brave ads functionality. In fact it's probably not even hard to write a script to do it automatically. But no one has successfully funded large scale browser development while being FOSS and not relying on ads.
Also, I know people who would opt-in, though I wouldn't myself.
> Your beautiful drive through Colorado requires quite a bit of maintenance and financial support.
Roads cost money.
> Somebody has to pay for that.
Someone has to pay for the roads.
> With Brave, Advertisers can pay for it (without getting hold of your data) by way of users. ... Brave aims to sustain the roads that grant you access to that scenery.
Ad's (billboards) can pay for a great browser experience (the roads)...
So, therefore I said: Billboards don't pay for roads, taxes do. I get that the analogy isn't 1:1. However, stating that is an easy way to demonstrate that Brave doesn't have a market. Just like I don't need billboards to pay for my roads, I don't need ad's to pay for my browser experience. Firefox is open-source, and adblock exists. Come off it.
With regards to original argument, my impressions was you didn't assume good faith and respond to the strongest plausible interpretation of what the Brave developer said, as the Hacker News commenting guidelines suggest you do. Take that how you will.
Well, a lot of internet was built by people who want to share for sharing sake. Then companies figured there was money and so they started lining up those highways. Now, people do not have a decent way of knowing which highways have no ads. The equivalent is that people do not have a search engine which will send me only to sites which have no ads. Google has been spammed to death for every imaginable keyword. Every recommendation engine only shows based on eye balls.
If all these ad supported publishers die, we would have a much better internet where we can read genuine content, not some marketing based stuff. Hint: Look at the non ad supported Hacker news!
This, and the fact that Brave has decided to get in bed with advertisers at all seriously undermines their credibility.
Look, I don't have anything against you personally. I'm sure you're a good, kind person with pure intentions. But tracking or not, advertising is not the way to fund a browser that serves users. You'll always be beholden to advertisers for your cash flow, and you're always going to be making choices between prioritizing users or prioritizing your income. Sometimes the choices will seem minor and it won't be clear which direction to go, and you'll compromise and the focus on users will be eroded. And at some point the choice might be between screwing over users and shutting the doors of your company due to lack of funding or something else. Historically, some people have chosen users but most have chosen to stay open.
I hope you prove me wrong, I really do. But you'll excuse my skepticism at this point.
Any browser requires high trust, but most of the bigs have not stopped tracking, as they have been built or coopted by ad companies. Who is in bed with whom?
On Lavabit, you are changing the threat model from ad businesses to national security agencies, but I will play along. Read https://brendaneich.com/2014/01/trust-but-verify/ and think it through. If we tried cheating our users to help advertisers somehow, we would be found out and roasted into a crisp on all media by our lead users.
You said in your other post to me:
"Ad spend last year was over $100M in the US alone, ~$300M globally. Heading toward $1T globally. Users subscribing or paying out of goodwill won't cover this if we block it all and corner the market."
So you're saying that most of your funding comes from advertisers, not from users. By the design of your business model you've chosen to be more in bed with advertisers than with users.
What I quoted also implies that you had to do that, because you couldn't get the funding you wanted otherwise. But I'm saying you never have to do anything. You chose this business model, not because it served users, but because it makes you money. I'm sure your intentions are good, that you think that having that money will allow you to serve users. But I'm saying that conflicts of interest this fundamental rarely play out as intended.
> Any browser requires high trust, but most of the bigs have not stopped tracking, as they have been built or coopted by ad companies. Who is in bed with whom?
This is a perfect solution fallacy. I totally agree that there's no major browser that hasn't been coopted by advertisers to some extent (except maybe GNU Icecat). This is a big criticism I have of Mozilla, for example, but at least they admit there's a problem and try to take steps to prevent it--although I'll reiterate: they're not enough as far as I am concerned. So far, in this thread, you have yet to even admit that there is a problem, which means you can't possibly take steps to mitigate it.
No Sir -- not from me, anywhere in anything I ever wrote. Browsers are imperfect. For one thing they have 0days.
Brave is imperfect too.
Before we correspond more, please tell me how you took my big-picture realpolitik point about western ad powers acquiring or otherwise getting control over 3 of 4 top browsers as having anything to do with perfect vs. good?
I said 3 of 4 top browsers are owned by or almost wholly dependent for revenue on huge ad businesses. That matters. You can see it in Apple’s ITP and prior third party cookie blocker, in Safari from 2003. Apple is not dependent on ads that need tracking.
It is not ads but tracking which creates perverse conflicts and hazards, including regulatory and ‘browsers as blind ad tech runtimes’ capture.
"The unfortunate consequence is that software vendors — including browser vendors — must not be blindly trusted. Not because such vendors don’t want to protect user privacy. Rather, because a law might force vendors to secretly violate their own principles and do things they don’t want to do."
And that doesn't just apply to the NSA forcing you to backdoor your own software under threat of arrest. It also applies to major sources of funding forcing you to backdoor your own software under threat of defunding you.
I want a browser made by people who would shut down their business rather than compromise users. And so far in this conversation, it doesn't even sound like you've considered that possibility or believe it could happen, so how can we trust that you'd do that?
So from the FAQ :
> Each ad request is anonymous, and exposes only a small subset of the user’s preferences and intent signals to prevent “fingerprinting” the user by a possibly unique set of tags.
It means that advertisers still get some feedback on the "intent signals" of the users that have seen their ads ? So it is private in the sense you cannot be uniquely identified but some of your intents are somewhat leaky ?
The user opts-in to Brave Rewards/Ads. This kicks off a machine-learning model that begins to study the user's habits and interests.
On a daily basis, the user downloads a regional ad catalog (as to other Brave users in their region). This catalog contains numerous ad options, which your device studies for relevance.
If/when your device identifies an ad within the catalog that might be of interest to you, it displays the ad as an OS notification. At this time, 70% of the ad revenue is deposited into your in-situ wallet.
At this point, the user has made absolutely no contact with an advertiser. If the user chooses to click on the ad, it is opened in its own tab in the Brave Browser. This tab, like all others, is subject to Brave's default security/privacy settings. No third party trackers, etc.
The advertiser will know that you are interested in their product/service, because you clicked the ad. But no other information about you is given to them; only what can be inferred from standard first-party browsing online.
Brave aims to keep your data private, and on-device. It is never leaked to us, or anybody else. You are sovereign over your data, and you decide with whom it is shared. That's our goal, always.
Brave needs to know when and which ad has been shown to the user, to deposit that ad's revenue right? That means whenever an ad is shown "locally", it still needs to contact Brave server with user's identity behind of some encryption. Brave then shows the proof of ads being presented to users to ad provider to get revenue.
Sure, the user's interests are studied locally (and inefficiently because it runs on user's computer), but the result feeds back to Brave. How does that improve privacy?
At some point, Brave may either leak the data accidentally or decide to sell the data, because the data, which capture each uniquely identifiable user's interests, is valuable.
Or am I misunderstanding something here?
The key is no user identifiable events and no ability to link events for a given user together. Advertisers want authentic aggregate results — they don’t want (at first or in bulk, also not legal in many places) user ids. We built an authentic but anonymous ad system.
I would even volunteer some data for off machine I could choose which data goes. Aka speech data for training an agent.
Paying, if it goes [almost] entirely to the publisher, not to see them
Not paying anything to anyone, and still not seeing them (ad blocking)
What are your scaling concerns? I'd love to hear more!
(I work at Brave, and am on the team bringing the ad platform to market)
Also, what are edge cached urls?
If you click the notification, Brave opens a tab in the Brave browser and navigates to the advertisement location. At this point, the ad can load images, video, etc.
Important to note, however, that ad pages are not given any special treatment in the Brave browser. They are subject to the same privacy/security restrictions on all other pages. Third parties are severely limited, if not entirely prevented from engaging in the session.
With Brave Ads, advertisers know that they're reaching a party that is interested (Brave Ads are opt-in). Advertisers know that attrition of value due to fraud and middle-men is reduced in our model. Users know that they don't have to sacrifice privacy or security to participate, and that on-device machine-learning progressively delivers a better experience over time.
How about USD or USD stable currencies for this?
Lately I see one of two things :
1. The market is up, BAT loses value because BTC sucks all the air out of the room with n00b investors.
2. The market is down, BAT loses value because BTC valuation scares off investors.
Otherwise, Brave/BAT team can announce features & partnerships all day long and the price literally never budges.
Even better: fork it, create your own cryptocurrency like BAT, make ICO and become a millionaire!
There is no reason everybody to use BAT.
> Publishers must verify ownership of their properties with Brave in order to receive contributions from Brave users. If a publisher has not verified ownership, then a user’s contributions will be held in reserve inside the browser for 90 days. The browser routinely updates an internal list of all verified publishers to determine whether a property can receive contributions. At the end of the 90 day period, any contributions marked for unverified publishers will be released back to the wallet. No funds leave the browser except to go to verified creators.
> Previous versions of the Brave desktop browser worked differently. Until version 0.58.21, released on January 11, 2019, browsers with Brave Rewards enabled would contribute BAT to content creators whether or not they had verified. Brave would then hold contributed funds for those publishers in escrow until they’d verified.
I don't believe this program was live 90 days before the uproar, so I don't give much credit for them not taking the donations.
The second model is the Publisher Model; this is in the works now. Under this model, Publishers will be able to opt-in the system as well, and have ads displayed on their pages. Under this model, publishers receive 70%, and the user receives 15%. But both models require consent before any ads are displayed.
Quality will increase with Time and Inventory. We're seeing positive trends here, as more and more diverse advertisers are lining up to join the platform.
The comment you first replied to said that the ads were so bad and scammy that they shouldn't be shown to anyone, not that they were poorly targeted.
You're free to disagree with what they said, but it's weird to respond as if they'd said something else entirely that you already agree with.
Blocking ads and displaying your own certainly is an "ad replacement" model though, and websites that don't want to participate have no choice.
Brave brings security and privacy minded folks back into the system by offering a better deal for all parties. Users get paid without giving up data, Advertisers get better value for their spend. And Publishers don't have to weigh their sites down with third-party scripts to monetize content.
You have to volunteer yourself to receive ads and they come in like system notifications, not anywhere near the content.
should they be allowed to create an ad driven piece of software? absolutely? but if that software is an ad blocking browser, its creating a new interesting gray area.
We've introduced advertising that is private by default, with a new approach to measuring and accounting for ad event confirmations through our ad confirmation protocol.
We have some information regarding the confirmation protocol here, for those interested. https://github.com/brave/brave-browser/wiki/Security-and-pri...
Aside from providing advertising that's private by default, our ad platform includes people in the process, by rewarding them for their attention (70% of the rev share for the ads viewed). People can then contribute those tokens to publishers and creators (like Wikipedia), or hold the tokens. In the future, people will be able to redeem tokens for gift cards, premium content, etc.
We'll be introducing additional ad units in the future for publishers, with a cleaner deal and better rev share than they currently receive (publishers will receive 70% of the revenue, people will receive 15%, Brave will receive 15%).
If we were just replacing publisher ads with other ads from the existing ad ecosystem, I'd understand and agree with the sentiment. That said, we're bringing new methods for ad delivery, accounting and matching to the market, all designed to function without leaking your information from your device. Hope this helps.
I think it would be amazing to have a browser, that instead of just blocking ads, had a way for you to set "whatever the community thinks is best" and have the browser pull down the best stylish/tampermonkeyish patches for a site, or completely new css. (you would also have a drop down with "see other popular views, and "set this view as default for this site, along with the ability to rank/vote on which template applies best for that site.) Or the user could have an option on first run that asks "ideally what would sites look like" and then have it pull the most appropriate modification to match that template. A user could lean towards "let the site express its identity and clean it up a little bit" OR "strip it down to just the essentials" OR "just fix the bugs."
In an ideal world, I would prefer to use a browser that, by default, homogenizes as much of the layout of a site as possible, with a one click option to "see it how it was intended." I think reader modes go a little too far, because they destroy content layout and nav in the process of cleanup. It would be nice for some elements, like navigation to come through, but in a standardized way, so the menu bar at new york times and washington post render identically, but still let me bounce between their different verticals. RSS readers sort of accomplish that, but I would rather be able to also BROWSE the web. RSS readers clean up one layer deep, but in a hyperlinked world dont let you get very far.
These changes to the digital advertising industry have driven mass adoption of ad and content blockers. In 2015, more than 500 million users were blocking trackers, and ads/content that relied on them. This protects user privacy and security, but hurts the sustainability of the Web we all know and love. Brave aims to deliver a fully developed solution.
Brave's model (which is predicated on user-consent, and privacy-by-default) seeks to fully-solve the aforementioned problems. We offer advertising without compromising user trust, and better value to advertisers/publishers during the process. Perhaps most importantly is that Brave Rewards brings disillusioned users who once ran ad and tracker blockers back into the fold.
In the early 2000s, toolbars that replaced a website's ads with different ads were considered malware. Instead of the website that bears the cost of delivering content getting the money, the browser is now getting the money.
How is Brave Browser different in this regard than those malware toolbars?
I imagine those consumers also "agree" to website Terms of Service that don't allow this.
I wonder if websites will fight back, closing accounts or doing more to stop people who use adblockers or Brave.
My personal belief is that websites are free to track users as much as they want, but users are free to respond however they want. If it becomes an arms race, so be it, but I think in the end the result will be adtech finally having to fix itself which is a very good thing.
My conscience is okay with ad-blocking. It is not okay with helping someone steal.