In the LA Times, Joel Stein asks, “what’s the deal with all the ads?” Surely, there is so much money they can extract? Along the way, he quotes yours truly:
According to Joshua Gans, an economist at Melbourne Business School in Australia, whom I could call by using free international Internet phone service, there’s a social norm against repugnant transactions, such as paying for a kidney. In the last few years, too many transactions have become repugnant. “And if you need to make money to pay for the content … and you can’t get the consumers to pay, what do you do? Sell a related product, advertising,” Gans told me. The good news is that at this point, I’m pretty sure The Times’ sales staff will sell space on their kidneys.
It is a little out of context. Here is the link to the paper that discusses this in more detail.