Buzzfeed is often annoying but it has its place. The thing is 90% click-bait but whatever, so it 90% of the overall internet. The quick easily digested list thing that they have perfected is sadly multiplying. I like my lists with meat, the way Cracked.com does it, but that’s just me.
The Huffington Post, which is a left wing news aggregator, has always struggled to find meaningful original content. I don’t know the reasons behind it, but they always end up linking to the New York Times or the Washington Post if the story they are covering requires serious journalism. They have some OC (original content) but I’ve never found anything on there that leads me to believe I need to constantly peruse their in-house articles.
The main reason I will use Huffington Post is because it has a very wide range of links to other websites and enough of these are interesting. Its a sort of central location on the internet and its updated with enough frequency that I find it useful to visit. This also means that I link out of Huffington Post because that’s where the journalistic meat is.
In an effort to keep clicks and page views like my own in its corner of the web, Huffington Post has been imitating the buzzfeed style of article; which is actually terrible since they want to be taken seriously as an news organization. The result is that there is even more trashy crap on the website.
Now this has been combined with one of the worst things about journalism, and it is something the internet has not helped with. People from corporate PR teams hide adds as journalism. If you are not careful, that article you are reading could really just be a sneakily placed add for some product. It takes the any news is good news maxim, to the logical extent for PR people, if you control the news, than any news is literally good news!
So what am I talking about exactly? This piece of crap: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/03/11/why-you-should-eat-spam_n_4923479.html?utm_hp_ref=mostpopular
I don’t know why I’m getting worked up about this. I guess I just expected a little better, even from the HuffPo organization. But that article is crap, just totally and utter crap. Worse for your brain than spam is for the body. The only redeeming thing on the page is the link to the monty python clip. The rest of it was clearly written by an intern in Austin, MN.
Send them the scoop that you demand better journalism from such a prominent news source here: firstname.lastname@example.org
And be on the look out for this sort of thing from all news sources, and call them out publicly when it happens!