If you haven’t heard the recent news, major US television and radio broadcaster, CBS, has been under some major fire in the recent news cycle. Stories claim that on at least a couple of their major websites, CBS has been caught red-handed making a profit without the permission of their users.

CBS is the parent corporation of Showtime, one of the most popular television networks in America, and recently they’ve been the subject of some well-placed criticism. Over the weekend, users uncovered that on both Showtime.com and ShowtimeAnytime.com–which are both official sites for the network–Javascript was implemented to allow the websites to mine the cryptocurrency, Monero, without the permission of their users.
Essentially, these websites were earning additional profit over the weekend in a way that many consider to be inappropriate business practice. Some reports even claim that up to 60% of the CPU resources of individuals who were steaming on the site was being actively used by Showtime to profit from mining Monero coins.

Whether this was the work of CBS’s Showtime or a third party altogether who might have had access to the code remains to be seen, but the story does come at somewhat of an odd time. Last week, major torrenting website The Pirate Bay confessed to using many of their users’ computers to mine Monero as wellso it would seem that there is some precedent for websites intentionally using this new method as a way to generate additional profits.

What This Might Mean For The Industry

If we put aside all ethical questions of whether or not these practices should be allowed, for just a moment, is the fact these news stories occurred in the first place good news for the cryptocurrency industry? Think about it this way, if websites have turned to cryptocurrency mining as an additional revenue for profit, it does add some validity to the inherent value of cryptocurrency. If The Pirate Bay, and now possibly CBS’ Showtime see this as a viable source of income, you’d imagine it would be for good reason.

Monero itself benefits from a lot of positive buzz at the moment, as many supporters are adamant that the currency’s value will rise in the not-so-distant future. Additionally, if we consider the fact that major websites and publications are continuing to see decline in ad-revenue due to the increasing number of users who utilize ad-blocking software to prevent themselves from having to view or interact with adverts, perhaps this could lead to an industry solution.

If websites were to find a way to mine currency without overcharging the resources of their users, many might be quick to make the trade in favour of an internet that is largely void of advertisements. In the future, a system where websites generate profit by mining cryptocurrencies could hypothetically free websites from the need to sell advertising space as a way to generate profit. After all, this isn’t the first time cryptocurrency would be pitched as a way to generate website profits in the digital age… Spearheaded by the creator of Javascript, Brendan Eich’s recently launched currency, Basic Attention Token (BAT) was actually designed with tackling a lot of the issues websites currently face in making profit in a world where users are increasingly savvy, and reluctant to view adverts.

Regardless, it seems clear that cryptocurrencies–which started as a way to revolutionize the way we think about currency–have started to be used as a way to revolutionize other industries as well. Now, it seems like cryptocurrency might even end up solving a lot of the issues that currently plague the internet as a whole.

Even in just the short term, the fact that websites are seemingly committing these practices–ethics aside–means that the world is starting to wake up to the value of cryptocurrency. This is not only good news for the industry, it’s also a very exciting thing to witness as an individual.

This article was written by one of our guest writers

Author: Jack Filiba from deepless.com

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