What is the Basic Attention Token? Aka BAT.

Today we will answer the question. What is the Basic Attention Token or BAT? I will tell you why it’s a great crypto to keep an eye on, what problems it solves, what it’s potential is and, at the end I will also tell you how you can get it for free, just by browsing the web.

Brendan Eich

The Basic Attention Token (BAT) was created by Brendan Eich.


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The same person who created JavaScript, Mozilla and the Firefox browser.

He is now the CEO of Brave Software, the team behind the Basic Attention Token.

Brendan has innovated internet browsing and his Firefox browser is used by over 200 million people.

The Basic Attention Token is his new project that attempts to improve how online advertising is done.

Online advertising

You’ve seen online advertising pretty much anywhere you go, on websites, on Facebook on YouTube.

Advertisers are finding more and more ways to inject advertising into the content we read and watch.

The users find more and more ways to block ads with ad blockers and browsers that don't contain tracking cookies and ads.

Meanwhile the small publishers get a smaller and smaller share of the revenue as most of the ad money is sucked up by the big players like Google and Facebook.

The Basic Attention Token is natyive token of the Brave web browser and it attempts to make online advertising safer, more fair and more efficient for everyone involved.

The first thing to understand is most of the internet is built around one thing. “User Attention”. Billions are spent on understanding what you watch, read, what you are interested in and how to get you to tune in for longer and longer periods of time as well as keep coming back every day for more.

What is the Basic Attention Token? Aka BAT.

Players in the internet space

Besides the user, there are two other players in the internet space. The publisher and the advertiser. The advertiser is the company that wants to show you their products. This could be a fast food chain, a car company, a bank, whatever.

And the publisher is the person whose website or app you are on. Sometimes the words publisher and advertiser can be used interchangeably. 

Users want to access interesting content without being barraged by annoying ads that they are not interested in.

Advertisers want to reach their target demographics and not waste their time on showing their ads to bots or people who are not interested in their product.

And publishers want to be paid for the work so they can continue to produce interesting content for their users.

The Brave browser and the Basic Attention Token attempt to fix all these problems by allowing the user to participate in the digital ad market. They will be able to opt in to seeing targeted ads and receive a small compensation for it.

The advertiser would purchase the Basic Attention Token and then use it as payment for publishers AND users.

Users would be able to reward the publishers they like by watching the ads on their sites while earning rewards for doing so. Publishers would be able to have a better user experience. Advertisers would be able to bypass ad blockers and reach the people who are interested in hearing their message.

Everyone wins.

privacy-first browser

The Brave Browser is a privacy-first browser. Meaning that it’s core mission is to help keep your browsing private. Many companies try to get tracking pixels or cookies on your computer so that they can follow you around the web and build up a profile of your activities.

They can then share that data with others, sell or rent it out. This makes you more exposed to data breaches, invasion or privacy as well as potential for targeted attacks by the bad guys.

This is a difficult problem to solve as some functionalities are useful, however the user needs to be in control of their data and private browsing is a big part of that.

How does it work?

So how does BAT actually work? Well The BAT token is an ethereum based token. It’s a token on the Ethereum blockchain, the second biggest crypto currency in the world right now.

And the BAT token is the native token of the Brave browser.

The advertisers buy BAT tokens so that they are able to play ads for users. Users can turn off all ads, BUT they are incentivized to have them on, so that they can earn BAT tokens for simply browsing the web.

They also use BAT tokens to “tip” their favorite creators.

A new feature that is being tested is “Sponsored Images”. Companies can pay to have their ads appear as background images on certain pages.

BAT PRICE

The price of the Basic Attention Token went up considerably. Late 2020 the price was around 21 cents. In late 2021 it hit a peak of $1.77, a 8X increase.

Keep in mind NONE of this is financial advice, guessing where the price will go in the future is impossible. With that said, the basic attention token is threatening to disrupt a massive industry. 

The US online advertising spend rocketed past $140 billion in 2020 in US alone and we are expecting it to get to half a trillion worldwide by 2022.

As more advertisers come into the space and the user base of the brave browser grows, companies will be forced to purchase BAT tokens, rapidly driving up demand and therefore the price.

And traditional online advertisers are taking notice. Many online newspapers and online publications are powering up their legal teams to fight back against the Brave Browser.

NAA (Newspaper Association of America) together representing over 1,200 US newspapers, co-signed a letter to Brave branding its plans to replace publishers' existing ads with its own as “blatantly illegal”, and stating that the media companies involved “intend to fully enforce their rights… including but not limited to statutory damages of up to $150,000 per work”.

They said

“Your plan to use our content to sell your advertising is indistinguishable from a plan to steal our content to publish on your own website,” reads the letter, which you can see in full here.  

So while the opportunity is great, so are the challenges in creating something like this.

Now, you might be wondering, how do I get my hands on this token in case it becomes a massive worldwide success. 

Well, there are few ways including generating it for free while browsing the web.

First, you can purchase the Basic Attention Token on many exchanges including Coinbase, checkout the description for updated information. You can buy, sell and trade the token just like any other crypto you are familiar with.

OR you can get it for free by using the Brave Browser. 

I installed the Brave Browser recently and I love everything about it so far. 

It’s free, it’s fast and it naturally blocks all incoming ads, tracking pixels etc so that surfing the web is fun again. It also seems to get rid of at least some of the annoying pops on websites.

You can open private windows with Tor. It’s available on mobile as well. I’ve been using it and I love it so far.

It has a built- in Brave Wallet which allows you to QUOTE “old crypto assets in your custody. Track portfolio performance, and interact with web 3 DApps. Trade, invest, borrow, and lend with DeFi. All right from the Brave privacy browser. No extensions, no download required.”

As you surf the web you are also rewarded with the BAT tokens, you have to confirm you are  human to receive those rewards, but it’s pretty painless.

The amount you get is not a lot. I’ve seen people reporting making from $5 to $30 per month for “heavy surfing”, most will probably make less than that., but it’s a nice little payment for just surfing the web and it can potentially be worth a lot more in the future.

To start just just go to https://brave.com/ or search for a brave browser on your phone’s app store and you can get started asap. No technical knowledge is required.