eBay CEO Devin Wenig has been working to raise his profile of late. He published an essay in Fortune
in July on "Why We Should Teach All Students to Code," and last week, he participated in CNBC's feature, "The Future of Business."
The feature included a Q&A. Some revelations: he is a big fan of social media, and his favorite apps are eBay, Headspace (a meditation app), and news sites. He uses Apple IOS Messenger to communicate with friends, family, and coworkers.
CNBC also published video snippets, and one of the more interesting is one where Wenig shares his thoughts about advertising. He said advertising is fading into the background and said people don't want intrusive ads.
"I think people don't feel comfortable when their data is used to target them with advertising that they don't want."
"Advertising is moving from this third-party pop-up, intrusive environment to something that's more native and seamless," he said; "five years from now, advertising will look very, very different than it does today."
His thoughts on advertising are particularly relevant given eBay's own focus on growing its ad revenue by pushing sellers to advertise their listings beyond the insertion fees they pay. While eBay Promoted Listings are not in the form of the dreaded pop-ups Wenig abhors, some users are complaining that sponsored listings in search results are harming the shopping experience.
When asked about cryptocurrency, Wenig said he was not a fan of today's crypto because of its volatility but said, "I'm a believer that crypto could play a meaningful role alongside fiat currencies."
He also said eBay was "exploring and experimenting with a lot of different things."
"I think that if we found the vehicle where we believe that we can create stability and a currency that people would value, we could move $100 billion of eBay's business in that direction. We're not quite there yet. But I'm an advocate of cryptocurrency. And I'm a believer that it will play a role in the global economy as we go forward."
Cryptocurrency is getting more attention since Facebook announced its Libra initiative.
Wenig also answered questions about data's effect on ecommerce; the on-demand economy; sustainable shopping; the evolving concept of ownership; and the future of cross-border commerce.
You can watch the video snippets of the eBay CEO on this page
on CNBC, and you can read the transcript on this page
. Let us know what stands out to you.