The cost of security

I have been using Brave browser for 2 or 3 years,
i don’t have any complain or remark to do so far.
That does feel like safe, anonymuous.

But still, a part of me got a hard time to belive that being off the radar is free,
and provided philanthropically.

At least there are no ads, but lord knows how of little value are ads to me,
in term of influencing.
So what’s left ? what the motivation, what’s the goal, what is free, what is not ?

Where does the money come from ? where are the datas going to ?
As a prime guinea pig (so much ego here) , i would like to know to who my meat is sold to.
BRAVE never,ever asked me for 1 dollar… nor did firefox… good lord.

And google is ok with it too, and youtube music too, despite i am listening to hundreds hours of music each month, and reading news,and so on, not a single ad or dime are being asked to me… so what is being traded here?

what kind of datas? how personal/generic.anonymous it is, To what extent ?, what s the impact ?

I appreciate the willingness to free oneself from the shackles of ignorance amidst an existential reckoning of digital self awareness as you ask the Brave community for a crash course in a series of BIG questions regarding Big Tech.

There’s no easy, succinct way to robustly respond to ALL of the questions you hold in a way that also respects their various nuances. Your questions seem simple, but there’s all sorts of information underpinning the answers themselves. As such, I’ll speak more broadly rather than to the nitty gritty of specifics surrounding Brave’s modus operandi.

Simply put, tech companies make money the way most businesses do: equity capital via investors, ad revenue, premium paid services, & asset valuation via data analytics from consumer demographics & user engagement.

A tool or resource is defined in large part by its use. As such, audience demand, time spent, attention paid, and frequency of use, are just some general metrics used to justify continued investment in and expansion of any given platform or program, regardless of field.

Nothing is free even when you may not notice a direct pecuniary cost. Users provide information about themselves, their preferences, and habits. That information is gathered and becomes proprietary data which is further analyzed to drive allocation of resources, implementation of strategy, and other business decisions including company valuation & potential buyouts or mergers.

Autodidactically, I’d recommend researching key literature around the subject. Open access journals & public libraries are a great place to start without needing to spend money. If you’re really interested, perhaps go to school for guided instruction (business, compsci, economics, or some combination therein). If all that seems too overwhelming, I’m sure there are plenty of pithy Youtube videos addressing your musings. Good luck.

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