Stephen Foley: The trendy way to gain online readers
Wednesday 20 April 2011
Outlook The Daily Mail's website is a sight to behold, a smorgasbord of celebrity tittle-tattle and fancy-that internet ephemera. There is even some news on it, and bits and bobs that might be recognisable to readers of the UK newspaper – but not much, because the Mail's online business is really just a giant dragnet designed to snare the shoals of casual browsers following the internet's latest trending topics.
ComScore has just certified this the second-most visited newspaper website in the world, after The New York Times, with nigh on 40 million readers last month. One is reminded of the edict to AOL's journalists earlier this year, when it was chasing traffic from search engines and Twitter. AOL's hapless editors were told to look for a subject that was "trending" on social networks, then look for another one, then dash off a story combining the two. It is why stories about Kim Kardashian and Muslim Playboy models will always trump the AV referendum in the hierarchy of Mail Online news stories.
Premium news sites are hoping to start charging premium rates to advertisers. But for those at the tabloid end of the market, rock-bottom prices for advertising on the web mean that Mail-size visitor numbers are needed to bring in meaningful revenues. On ComScore's new evidence, there is a real business here, but let's call it what it is: sweatshop journalism.
- 1 The truth about 'girl things': Three cheers for Heather Watson's honesty
- 2 Man who held up 'hire me' sign at Waterloo station returns a year later with 'I'm hiring' sign
- 3 UK weather: Snow to fall in the coming week with sub-zero temperatures to last until early February
- 4 Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
- 5 Men behaving badly: Urinating while standing, 'manspreading' and the gendering of selfishness
Man who held up 'hire me' sign at Waterloo station returns a year later with 'I'm hiring' sign
UK weather: Snow to fall in the coming week with sub-zero temperatures to last until early February
Saudi preacher who 'raped and tortured' his five -year-old daughter to death is released after paying 'blood money'
Iraq invasion 2003: The bloody warnings six wise men gave to Tony Blair as he prepared to launch poorly planned campaign
Ellen DeGeneres leads Johnny Depp, Gwyneth Paltrow and Paul Bettany in revealing game of Never Have I Ever
Nigel Farage: NHS might have to be replaced by private health insurance
'We would evict Queen from Buckingham Palace and allocate her council house,' say Greens
French court convicts three over homophobic tweets, in case hailed as a 'significant victory' by LGBT rights campaigners
British Muslim school children suffering a backlash of abuse following Paris attacks
George Galloway condemns 'racist, Islamophobic, hypocritical rag' Charlie Hebdo at freedom of speech rally
Islamic history is full of free thinkers - but recent attempts to suppress critical thought are verging on the absurd
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