I’ll begin by prefacing my post – I do not depend on making a living via generating buzz for my website (and if I did, I’d be more than broke). Perhaps I would feel differently if I did. I was inspired (or whatever the opposite of that is) to write this post because of all the recent publicity Apple is getting for a potential event where they may potentially announce something about another potential iPhone OS upgrade (which potentially has copy and paste functionality). Really, that’s a story? But Apple in a subject line will generate traffic, so they write about it. All the talk about AIG’s bonuses? I’m sure you saw those headlines. Well, the $165 million represents less than a tenth of a percent of the bailout money they received ($173 billion), and was almost assuredly legally guaranteed due to the way employment contracts were structured. Remember all the hub-bub about the pork in the omnibus bill? Less than 2% of the budget.
I’m not arguing that it’s insignificant – in fact I agree it’s very important to understand. But it would be great if they could talk about it in the context of the entire topic. Tell me about a product that has some details released (i.e. the Lenovo Pocket Yoga) or tell me about how AIG disbursed the other 99.9% of our money, and give some analysis on the impacts.
Perhaps the underlying issue here is the depressed state of newspapers and rapidly declining advertising revenue stream. Either way, do not reward this behavior, and avoid clicking the links – or we’ll be destined for these shenanigans everywhere.
It’s media saturation. I think it happened in sports media first, every non-story is a huge story, and people can only get their voice heard if their headline is bigger and angrier than the next guy’s. I hate it – it’s why I’m trying to forget how to read.