As content recommendation company Revcontent plans to unveil new tools for online publishers, it's also working with former AOL Platforms CTO Seth Demsey to develop its broader strategy.
Demsey left his role running adtech at AOL (which owns TechCrunch) over the summer, right before AOL-owner Verizon closed its acquisition of Yahoo. He told me that when he was introduced to Revcontent CEO John Lemp, he discovered they were "extremely ideologically aligned around what we think is the value of the Internet" — specifically, in giving publishers a distribution and business model beyond platforms like Facebook.
While Demsey's official role at Revcontent is as an advisor (and he's probably going to be pretty busy with his new "technology studio" 300 Qubits), he said that he's going to be involved on a day-to-day basis.
"This isn’t like a venture advisor where you talk to somebody an hour a month," he said. "I'm up to my neck in it. Every single day, there are 15 instant message threads I have to reply to. I’m on the hook for real work."
Lemp added that Demsey is working with Revcontent on both product and business strategy.
Lemp has argued before that high quality content recommendations can be important for online journalism to find a home beyond the Internet's "walled gardens." This week, he said it's too soon to discuss the specifics of Revcontent's new products, but the idea is to treat content recommendations as "a stepping stone towards a much bigger picture — something we feel can really make a difference out there for media companies."