Sponsored Links

Pocket now includes 'sponsored' articles in its recommendation feed

The company is testing out how to monetize its recommendation engine.

Pocket now includes 'sponsored' articles in its recommendation feed
Nathan Ingraham
Nathan Ingraham|February 23, 2016 4:48 PM

Pocket has become perhaps the best way to save links and view them later on the go, whether on a tablet, phone or a standard PC. The company behind it has found plenty of success, but now it wants to start making more money -- to that end, Pocket is starting to roll out sponsored article links that will show up in your "recommended" feed.

In its blog post outlining the new changes, Pocket makes it clear that it doesn't want to junk up your feed with low-quality content. The company will be focusing on making sponsored posts and content that "feel[s] natural to your Pocket experience." It also says that it'll try and serve up things you'll be interested in reading and watching. To that end, you can hide posts and give feedback on why they were hidden to help improve recommendations, and Pocket is also stressing that it wants users to give feedback on the program as it rolls out.

Naturally, all of the sponsored links will be clearly identified as such, so you should be able to skip past them pretty easily. And if you can't abide by a few sponsored links showing up in your recommendation feed, a Pocket premium subscription ($4.99 per month, or $44.99 per year) will remove them.

It's the latest change to the recommended feed that Pocket rolled out last July. Originally, it just highlighted recommendations from Pocket itself, but in November it started taking on the form of a social network. You could follow Pocket users and have their own recommendations show up in your feed and share out links of your own to other users. These new sponsored stories should start appearing in the next few weeks, but Pocket says that the roll-out will start pretty slowly with just the "occasional" story popping up.

Pocket now includes 'sponsored' articles in its recommendation feed