What comes after the attention economy?

generative image prompted by Alistair Croll
Kate Bush and Girl Talk point to new outcomes and priorities.

“The industrial age had robber barons who owned the means of production; the attention age has Billionaires who own the means of distraction.”

Those words come from a recent blog post by one Alistair Croll: entrepreneur, author, and one of the driving engines behind both Startupfest and the FWD50 conference. As Alistair notes on this podcast, what comes after the attention economy is something he’s been thinking deeply about.

“We all want AI to do our jobs for us—the boring parts. What we’re doing here is making computers more human-like, and sadly, they’re getting all the fun jobs. Because those are the jobs that don’t have to be perfect.”

Why? Well, as he put it: “It’s now really clear that AI is coming for a wide range of tasks for which we currently pay humans, particularly those in creative and white-collar fields.”

So what comes next?

In a new economy driven by Generative Pre-trained Transformers, what becomes abundant and what becomes scarce?

And what does this have to do with Kevin Kelly, Herbert Simon, Benjamin Bloom, Kate Bush, and Girl Talk?

We know the future is coming. This conversation is an exploration—thinking about how we should think about what that future looks like.

Let’s dig in.

The BetaKit Podcast is sponsored by Invest Ottawa.
From February 27-March 31, 2023, join changemakers across Canada for the fifth annual International Women’s Week. Throughout International Women’s Week, the Invest Ottawa community will host over 25 powerful events to participate in.

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The BetaKit Podcast is hosted by Douglas Soltys & Rob Kenedi. Edited by Kattie Laur. Sponsored by Invest Ottawa. Feature image courtesy generative AI and an Alistair Croll prompt.

Douglas Soltys

Douglas Soltys

Douglas Soltys is the Editor-in-Chief of BetaKit and founder of BetaKit Incorporated. He has worked for a few failed companies and written about many more. He spends too much time on the Internet.

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