alexleo:

image

What Indonesia island are you?

Which Last Supper diner are you?

Which friend’s baby are you? (FB app integration required)

Which historical despot are you?

Which historical despot would you have survived?

Which invasion of Poland would you have led?

Which pre-Enlightenment Pope are you?

Which Aleutian Island should you buy?

Which Glenn Greenwald are you? (Salon Glenn Greenwald, Guardian Glenn Greenwald, Pierre Omidyar Glenn Greenwald)

Which dead teenager in the Hunger Games are you?

Which law of thermodynamics are you?

Which devastating colonial power would you have been?

Who should’ve been your parents?

Which conspiracy theory should you believe?

Are you Schrödinger’s dead cat or alive cat?

Which serial killer should you write to?

(Note: Picture is of real quiz)

Let’s get to a meaty reason—a reason BuzzFeed and Ben Smith have zero interest in discussing. Because BuzzFeed had grown so big so fast, they didn’t want some loose cannon highlighting the shitty ads of potential or current big name advertisers. Yeah, that’s a pretty good reason to fire me.

Being a visionary, I brought this point up in my initial interview with Ben Smith. He said, more or less, “You don’t worry about that, that’s my problem.” Boy oh boy did it become his problem.

Ben Smith made me delete a post I did on Axe Body Spray’s ads, titled, “The Objectification Of Women By Axe Continues Unabated in 2013” (it was initially called something to the effect of “Axe Body Spray Continues its Contribution to Rape Culture,” but I quickly softened it). Get this: he made me delete it one month after it was posted, due to apparent pressure from Axe’s owner Unilever. How that’s for editorial integrity? Ben Smith also questioned other posts I did knocking major advertisers’ ads (he kept repeating the phrase “punching down”), including the pathetically pandering, irresponsible Nike “Fat Boy” commercial.

I of course understand that websites like BuzzFeed need lots of advertising dollars to operate, and that no media outlets—including the one you’re reading this on—are immune to advertiser pressure. I understand that my posts may have pissed advertisers off. I also understand—very clearly—the job I was hired to do because I invented it. I had a longstanding blog that clearly outlined what BuzzFeed was getting into. Turns out Ben Smith didn’t want what he asked for, and I guess I was too gullible to think it could be any other way.

—Mark “Copyranter” Duffy on how the no-haterz policy plays out IRL at Buzzfeed, especially when it comes to any kind of criticism of things that need to be criticized just in case they one day want to pay BuzzFeed to write criticize-able “native advertising.”

The Future of “Journalism” In 14 Tweets

Virality mills are ultimately reliant on ever-increasing page views to deliver impressions to advertisers and are prey to the same pitfalls as traditional publishers seeking inorganic audience growth. Furthermore, virality mills as a business model are no different from any publisher embracing viral content marketing for audience development – write with the singular goal of widespread exposure with complete disregard for a search acquisition strategy.

Just look at the language used by virality mills when talking about how efficient they are at what they do to see this in action. They mention creativity without referencing utility, volume of engagement without discussing the value of that engagement (intent), and exposure without any contextual relevancy If you sincerely believe that a million people engaging with a post about hybrid animals</a? is a better spend than advertising against a Jalopnik car review — I can’t help but think you have more money than sense. Moreover, if you think that advertising against the broad demographic base of a virality mill (20-30, American) is a better use of your budget versus the extremely customizable ad platforms of Facebook and Google, you’re in the wrong business entirely.

—Muhammad Saleem for Venturebeat on why even advertisers are getting suckered by BuzzFeed.

dceiver:

"Good news, it’s working! And it’s even better than actually solving problems!" A TRIPTYCH

Really meaningful content&#8230; that other people created and we monetized by selling your email address and interests to data brokers and marketers.

dceiver:

"Good news, it’s working! And it’s even better than actually solving problems!" A TRIPTYCH

Really meaningful content… that other people created and we monetized by selling your email address and interests to data brokers and marketers.

  • What is the origin and purpose of the wall between regular content and advertising? What challenges do publishers face in maintaining that wall in digital media, including mobile?
  • In what ways are paid messages integrated into — or presented as — regular content? Does it look different within mobile apps or on smart phones?
  • What business models support the monetization and display of native or integrated ads? Who controls how these ads are served up for consumers?
  • How can ads effectively be differentiated from regular content? Are there labels or visual cues that would work? What about when paid messages are aggregated — for example, in search results — or re-transmitted through social media?
  • What does research show about how consumers notice and understand paid messages that are integrated into, or presented as, news, entertainment, or other content? Does it matter how consumers seek out, receive, and view content online or in mobile apps? Does that affect if they notice and understand these messages as paid content?

The FTC might as well have just called this hearing, “Hey, we noticed BuzzFeed’s business model sort of relies on people not knowing what is advertising and, um, you know, there are like rules about that so we should probably look into it. Oh and also that Scientology thing in The Atlantic was totally fucked.”

But if you have ideas about what in particular sucks about it, you can submit a comment for the feds to read.

Yes, but will having Syria content enable them to sell “native ads” to The Economist?

Oh, guess that initial question already got answered

adamweinstein:

What Buzzfeed is like.

And also that the restaurant got paid by the gross sauce company to serve it to you, but you still had to pay the bill.

adamweinstein:

What Buzzfeed is like.

And also that the restaurant got paid by the gross sauce company to serve it to you, but you still had to pay the bill.

fek:

Can’t say I didn’t try.

They would if someone sponsored a listicle about it, though.

fek:

Can’t say I didn’t try.

They would if someone sponsored a listicle about it, though.