The amount of information available to the consumer has exploded with the advent of the internet. Think of your attention span as capital. The coming battle is going to be to among content providers to always place exactly the appropriate content right in front of you. Read/WriteWeb explores this fantastic world we're moving into, where the pixel producers endlessly smooch the bums of the consumer. Otherwise, you're gone.
It is important to realize that the key ingredient in the attention game is relevancy. As long as a consumer sees relevant content, he/she is going to stick around - and that creates more opportunities to sell. Literally, the longer a user stays on a site reading news etc, the higher the chance that person will click on an ad. So the question is: how do you show the user relevant content? This is a complex problem that can be partially addressed by recommendation engines. However, it is not possible for sites to generate relevant, personalized content unless they know the user. To personalize, web sites need to know you: your browsing history, the books you like, the wines you drink, the music you listening to, etc. The more information the better.