HuffPost Moderates Comments To Please Advertisers [Updated: Or Not]

from the that-doesn't-actually-help-advertisers dept

Update: After hearing from a few people at Huffington Post, it appears that the original explanation from Isaf was unclear, and led us to believe they were moderating comments based on advertiser preferences. However, Huffington Post has now clarified that they use the same AI just to determine how to post ads on certain content -- and that's what Isaf meant with his remarks. Not that they moderate comments based on advertiser preferences.

We've been somewhat excited that we're rapidly approaching one million total comments on Techdirt. We thought it was quite a nice milestone. But we feel a bit small to learn that the Huffington Post already has over 70 million comments just this year alone. Over at Poynter, Jeff Sonderman has a fascinating interview with the site's director of community, Justin Isaf, about how they manage all those comments. Apparently they have a staff of 30 full time comment moderators, helped along by some artificial intelligence (named Julia) from a company they bought just for this technology.

Now, obviously, sites have lots of different philosophies on moderating comments. Our own is pretty open. We have a spam filter that tries to cut out obvious spam (of which we get about 1,000 per day, last I checked) and other than that comments are basically unmoderated. We do have a system that allows the community to vote on funny and insightful comments (which we then round up in a weekly "best of" post). We also, just recently, introduced our first word/last word feature, which lets the community promote certain comments. Finally the community can also "report" comments they find problematic, which then minimizes those comments, though they remain available for anyone to see with one click. We've found that this system of trusting the community works pretty damn well overall.

HuffPo, on the other hand, between the technology and the moderators, seems more focused on nudging the conversation themselves. I can understand and respect that choice, but there was one detail that struck me as a bit questionable:
I’m a big fan of having machines help us with the lower level tasks, freeing up time, resources and brain power for more interesting and complex tasks. Julia [the artificial intelligence system that HuffPo owns] takes that a few steps further and helps us with a lot of other aspects of HuffPost in addition to helping weed out abusive members, including identifying intelligent conversations for promotion, and content that is a mismatch for our advertisers. She has allowed us to do a lot more with a lot less.
(Note: see update at the top). I recognize that these are all advertising businesses, but I'm a bit surprised to see HuffPo so blatantly admit that they moderate comments if they're "a mismatch for our advertisers." I've seen plenty of sites say they'll moderate inappropriate commentary, but leave reasonable commentary alone even if it's critical. But HuffPo is basically saying that if advertisers aren't likely to like the comments, they may moderate them. It's their system, and they can do what they want with that, but personally, that makes me feel uncomfortable. We've always tried to promote the fact that our own community is very opinionated (and not shy about it) when we've spoken to advertisers, and we use that as a way of explaining why things they do should be authentic and real, rather than forced and phony. And, because of that, we'd like to think that we're able to drive more interesting engagement. If you leave open the possibility of moderating comments that advertisers won't like, that seems to only encourage bogus and annoying advertising, since marketers may never learn that people don't actually like that kind of thing.

In the end, HuffPo's position is obviously self-serving, even as they pretend that it's best for advertisers. What they may end up doing is hiding the fact that the advertisements are bad, rather than improving the quality of the advertising. Now, obviously, I'm sure AOL does quite fine with HuffPo's ad selling (and they're a hell of a lot bigger than us), but it still struck me as interesting to see the company so blatantly admit how it reacts to content their advertisers might think is "a mismatch."


Reader Comments (rss)

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    Rikuo (profile), Oct 30th, 2012 @ 10:58am

    Can someone clarify what exactly it means? So say I write a comment on a HuffPo article that is critical of Advertisement Company X (more than likely without knowing that that company provides advertisements for HuffPo) that's when my comment will be moderated?
    Thanks in advance.

     

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    sehlat (profile), Oct 30th, 2012 @ 11:14am

    Whose bread I eat, his song I sing.

    And all that means is that, as usual, advertisers with thin skins will get ZERO feedback or warning that they may have a problem.

    It's as if somebody running a golf course in New York could shut down warnings about Sandy because "they're bad for business."

     

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    bob, Oct 30th, 2012 @ 11:14am

    Paywall!

    The readership gets what they pay for.

    If you're not paying, you're the product. People jump up and down while refusing to pay for the content. This site constantly mocks sites that set up paywalls. If the readers would just open up their purses, the news sites would bend over backwards to please them. Instead they take care of the advertisers because without them, the news would disappear.

    What do you expect?

     

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      Rikuo (profile), Oct 30th, 2012 @ 11:16am

      Re: Paywall!

      So you're saying that once customers start paying, then suddenly the big corporations will respect them?

      No...that hasn't happened. I've been a customer to many corporations and most of them treat me like dirt.

       

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        Erik N, Oct 30th, 2012 @ 11:52am

        Re: Re: Paywall!

        Paywwall will stop advertisers? Honestly, are you stupid or just a troll?

        Because it has stopped advertisers for: Television service (paid), subscription-only channels (paid), Paid-for satellite radio,magazines, sporting events that charge admission, and...printed newspapers.

        So how much information and entertainment media is ad-free just because it's paid for?

         

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          bob, Oct 30th, 2012 @ 12:01pm

          Re: Re: Re: Paywall!

          Traditionally the best media is ad-free. Movies are largely ad-free although some are testing product placement. Books are largely ad-free. The high-end channels like HBO are largely ad-free. Public TV and Radio. DVDs are largely ad-free although they do include plenty of trailers for other DVDs. I could go on.

          Almost every business niche supports two kinds of media: free, ad-driven vehicle filled with puff pieces and serious, ad-free newsletters.

          There are plenty of ad-free media sources. Don't let yourself be colored by the fact that cable TV charges you and sells advertising.

           

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            Not an Electronic Rodent (profile), Oct 30th, 2012 @ 12:21pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Paywall!

            Movies are largely ad-free although some are testing product placement
            Testing????? Good god! Where have you been for the last 30 years? Movies are often largly either product placement vehicles or aimed firmly at maximising merchandising or both.
            HBO is largely ad free? DVDs are largely ad free? So what you're saying is they don't have advestisments except for the advertisments?
            There are plenty of ad-free media sources.
            Well you still haven't named one that's actually ad-free so keep going.

             

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              bob, Oct 30th, 2012 @ 12:40pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Paywall!

              Actually, I think HBO is ad-free. I've never seen an ad on it. I just put in the word "largely" to cover my butt.

              And I don't think of the trailers for other movies on DVDs or at the movies as ads although that's what they are. And I don't think the audience thinks of them as being in the same class as the endless interruptions on broadcast TV. In any case, it's usually possible to fast-forward through them or even skip them.

              Public TV and Radio are also essentially ad-free.
              And again, look at the newsletter business. There are thousands of great newsletters that don't show any ads.

              And books are ad-free.

              Where do you get off claiming that I didn't list any ads? Just because one public TV station show put on one ad in one show doesn't mean that the viewing experience isn't close to 99% ad-free.

              Face it. There's a big difference between media behind a paywall and media that's broadcast and ad-driven.

               

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                Anonymous Coward, Oct 30th, 2012 @ 1:11pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Paywall!

                You see bob, this is when we know you have no idea what you're talking about.

                "Public TV and Radio are also essentially ad-free."

                Obviously, you've NEVER watched public tv or listed to radio. EVER. They are nothing but ads. A 30 minute show has at least 10 minutes of ads. If you get one solid hour of music on the radio, you'll pay for it with 5-10 minutes of ads. Which is not counting the usual 3 songs, 2-3 minutes of ads (as is usual).

                "And I don't think of the trailers for other movies on DVDs or at the movies as ads although that's what they are."

                Again, what you think is irrelevant. Trailers on DVD or at the theater are ads. The audience thinks of them as such. Also, you're ignoring the ads that run BEFORE the movie is even going, as in while you sit there waiting for it to start in the theater. Then the ads that run once the lights go down.

                However, you neglect, purposefully I think, to realize that people have said one reason they pirate or pay and get a pirated version is to avoid UNSKIPPABLE ads. Meaning no fast forward. So again, you're wrong.

                "And again, look at the newsletter business. There are thousands of great newsletters that don't show any ads."

                Newsletters? Wtf are you talking about? Newspapers, magazines, comics, etc ALL feature ads. Some even have product placement (much like television and movies) in the source themselves. Which is another form of advertisement.

                "And books are ad-free."

                Generally. But there is occasional product placement, which qualifies as not ad-free.

                "Where do you get off claiming that I didn't list any ads? Just because one public TV station show put on one ad in one show doesn't mean that the viewing experience isn't close to 99% ad-free."

                He got off making that claim because you didn't list anything that didn't have ads. You just said, "here are plenty of ad-free media sources." No list equals you made a claim that didn't list anything. And a claim that is demonstrably false. Even your claims that movies are ad free is false. Anyone with a DVD or a ticket to a showing at their local theater can testify to that.

                Sorry bob, but the viewing experience on television is nowhere near 99% ad free. In fact, it's reasonable to say AT LEAST half of the viewing experience is ads.

                "Face it. There's a big difference between media behind a paywall and media that's broadcast and ad-driven."

                No, there is no difference. And that's ignoring that you still have no idea what the word "paywall" actually means.

                You're still an idiot. Stop talking already.

                 

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                  Not an Electronic Rodent (profile), Oct 30th, 2012 @ 1:58pm

                  Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Paywall!

                  ... nope I think that about covers it. +1

                  Oh, except you missed:
                  Actually, I think HBO is ad-free. I've never seen an ad on it. I just put in the word "largely" to cover my butt.
                  Well, I don't get HBO, not being in the US and everything so I can't comment on the amount of overt advertising, though I'd imagine they spend a lot of time in self-promotion at least. On the other hand, since TV programmes are just as full of product placements as films, nope I'll go with still not ad-free.

                   

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                    Anonymous Coward, Oct 30th, 2012 @ 2:24pm

                    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Paywall!

                    Oh, totally missed that. And that's because I meant to start off with it as my lead in.

                    I no longer have HBO, but when I do (on "for free weekends") it is as you say it is. Lots of self-promotion. And again, product placement contained therein is a huge deal. So in no way is it ad-free.

                    I mean basically, the whole point of cable television, originally, was you pay to NOT see ads. Then, it became you pay to see ONLY SOME ads. Now it's the same as non-paid for television.

                    And the sheer fact that bob has the gall to say that 99% of entertainment is ad-free says that he either lives in a cave or is a complete fucking moron. But since he's on the internet saying what he is, I'm gonna go with the latter.

                    Also, please tell me I'm not the only one who laughed when he wrote " I just put in the word "largely" to cover my butt." Especially after all the rest he had so wrong.

                     

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                      Rikuo (profile), Oct 30th, 2012 @ 2:29pm

                      Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Paywall!

                      My favourite sentence of bob's?

                      "And I don't think of the trailers for other movies on DVDs or at the movies as ads although that's what they are."

                      *shakes head and laughs*

                       

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                        Anonymous Coward, Oct 30th, 2012 @ 3:55pm

                        Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Paywall!

                        That is certainly a facepalm moment.

                        There's a pair of sayings that I'm sure everyone, including bob, have heard before. I only wish bob would learn from one or both of these.

                        "Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak out and remove all doubt."

                        "Think twice, speak once."

                         

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                  RussK, Oct 30th, 2012 @ 2:32pm

                  Re: Paywall!

                  You do realize that "Public" can refer to PBS/NPR rather than the "public" radio and TV that refers to the medium in general. PBS/NPR does ahve underwriter references at the begining and end of most of their shows (.. is brought to you by the XXX Corp. and members of your local PBS Station, Thank You" but not much else.

                  I grant that their pledge drives are 10-15 minutes at a time mostly hard sell to become a member, but at 2-3 times per year, that is relative small price to pay.

                  I do wonder about NOVA and the Koch brothers support influencing (ie. self-censorship) topics, but that is probably a remote chance of real impact (at least I hope it is).

                   

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                    Anonymous Coward, Oct 31st, 2012 @ 12:30pm

                    Re: Re: Paywall!

                    PBS/NPR does ahve underwriter references at the begining and end of most of their shows (.. is brought to you by the XXX Corp. and members of your local PBS Station, Thank You" but not much else.

                    It used to be that way,but "sponsor acknowledgements" have expanded tremendously over recent years. Frequently on PBS you will see full minute long commercials produced by the sponsors at the beginning and end of shows. Even the voice overs at the beginning and end of radio programs now include reading long stretches of ad copy written by the sponsors.

                     

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                      nasch (profile), Oct 31st, 2012 @ 1:34pm

                      Re: Re: Re: Paywall!

                      NPR is still just doing the brief "sponsored by" messages. I assume local member stations have some flexibility; mine is following the national pattern.

                       

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                silverscarcat (profile), Oct 30th, 2012 @ 2:14pm

                Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Paywall!

                bob...

                Do you know why DVR is so popular with television audiences?

                Do you?

                It's because we can...

                *Gasp*

                SKIP THE COMMERCIALS

                 

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        PRMan, Oct 30th, 2012 @ 12:08pm

        Re: Re: Paywall!

        "I've been a customer to many corporations and most of them treat me like dirt."

        You need to do better at firing your vendors.

        I have several companies on a month-long ban (annoying advertising, Carl's Jr gets on here a lot for objectifying women, and Nissan's new annoying noises ad campaign crossed them right off my list for the next car I buy), year-long ban (NBC for holding Olympic coverage until almost midnight every night got them banned from my TVs for the rest of the year), 10-year ban (Apple just got on a second one for problems with my daughter's iPod syncing and suing everyone for stupid stuff) and a lifetime ban (AT&T, Citibank and Sony, for institutionalized theft on multiple occasions).

        You may argue that it doesn't matter to them, but if everyone refused to accept institutionalized theft, poor treatment and poor service, these companies would go out of business overnight. And the companies that make great products and treat the customer well would win out in the marketplace.

        In any event, these corporations don't bother me anymore.

         

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      Ninja (profile), Oct 30th, 2012 @ 11:26am

      Re: Paywall!

      You remind me of those children that have just learned a word and start using it everywhere.

      bob: Paywall!
      daddy: no bob, it's a rock. repeat, rock.
      bob: paywall!!!
      daddy: Jesus, I thought you'd learn another word after 10 years!
      bob: PIRATE MIKE!
      daddy: !!!!

       

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      MrWilson, Oct 30th, 2012 @ 11:34am

      Re: Paywall!

      "If the readers would just open up their purses, the news sites would bend over backwards to please them."

      Bullshit. Individual readers can't and won't shell out enough money to make up for what individual companies pay for advertising, therefore, the website with the paywall is not going to pay much attention to individual readers unless their financial contributions to the income of the site is as substantial as that of the companies.

      A news site pissing one reader off is nothing. A news site pissing one company off with tens of thousands of advertising dollars invested is significant to that site.

       

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        bob, Oct 30th, 2012 @ 12:32pm

        Re: Re: Paywall!

        I agree with you that people are hesitant to pay-- thanks in part to the relentless hating on paywalls directed by the free lunch crowd on the Internet. (Funded in part, by Big Search that can't imagine sharing with content creators.)

        I'm just saying that cheap readers shouldn't be surprised to hear that the sites they frequent are bending over to backwards to help the advertisers.

        When they're done being outraged, they should look around for a paywalled site that doesn't take ads. Consumer Reports is just one of the more prominent ones. There are plenty of good newsletters in many area and I suspect there will be more coming along.

         

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          silverscarcat (profile), Oct 30th, 2012 @ 2:19pm

          Re: Re: Re: Paywall!

          Why should I pay a website to use the internet?

          Here's a little history lesson for you, bob...

          Webcomics, for a long time, were paywall only.

          One of which was losing so much money that they were going to go under in less than a month.

          So, they decided 'screw it, this is the last month, everyone can see for free'.

          Shockingly, against all odds...

          They started making money.

          So much money that, in under 2 months, they were completely in the black and were able to keep the website open.

          So, see?

          Paywall = loss of revenue
          Free viewing = lots of revenue

           

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          Rikuo (profile), Oct 30th, 2012 @ 2:20pm

          Re: Re: Re: Paywall!

          Oh, sorry bob, I didn't know paywalls were some sort of holy business model that should never be criticised when used incorrectly. Seriously, that's what you sound like. You do sound like a religious zealot.

           

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            silverscarcat (profile), Oct 30th, 2012 @ 2:38pm

            Re: Re: Re: Re: Paywall!

            As someone who knows Jehova's Witnesses...

            bob's worse than a zealot.

            At least zealots have reference material to cite.

             

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              MrWilson, Oct 30th, 2012 @ 4:40pm

              Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Paywall!

              And zealots usually don't come back frequently when you've told them you're not interested in hearing the bullshit they have to offer you. The same can't be said for bob.

               

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          RD, Oct 30th, 2012 @ 3:53pm

          Re: Re: Re: Paywall!

          "I agree with you that people are hesitant to pay-- thanks in part to the relentless hating on paywalls directed by the free lunch crowd on the Internet."

          Free Lunch Crowd, eh? And how much did YOU pay to partake of this site where you are commenting on? How much did you pay to read this article? How much did you pay to be allowed to share your shill rhetoric?

           

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          MrWilson, Oct 30th, 2012 @ 4:53pm

          Re: Re: Re: Paywall!

          "I agree with you that people are hesitant to pay-- thanks in part to the relentless hating on paywalls directed by the free lunch crowd on the Internet. (Funded in part, by Big Search that can't imagine sharing with content creators.)"

          You're as bad as the SOPA supporters who blame Google for organizing opposition to it. Hint: people don't naturally want the internet that they know and love fucked with by officious legislators and they're also used to not paying for news online since before Google even existed.

          News is information. It's much more highly susceptible to the analog hole than other forms of media. I don't have to subscribe to a paywalled newspaper site to read their articles. Google has nothing to do with that.

          "I'm just saying that cheap readers shouldn't be surprised to hear that the sites they frequent are bending over to backwards to help the advertisers."

          Readers aren't cheap. They're just not stupid. Paying for paywalled news content is like paying for bottled water when your municipal water supply is clean and well filtered. You're just throwing away money for the illusion of quality.

          "When they're done being outraged, they should look around for a paywalled site that doesn't take ads. Consumer Reports is just one of the more prominent ones. There are plenty of good newsletters in many area and I suspect there will be more coming along."

          Consumer Reports also releases a lot of their content for free via the Consumerist blog they acquired from Gawker. Even paywalled sites know there's a different market for "cheap"/smart readers.

           

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      Leigh Beadon (profile), Oct 30th, 2012 @ 11:48am

      Re: Paywall!

      You do realize that without readers, the advertisers would disappear too, right?

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Oct 30th, 2012 @ 1:23pm

      Re: Paywall!

      People pay a fortune for cable T.V. and it still has commercials.

       

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      Anonymous Coward, Oct 30th, 2012 @ 3:12pm

      Re: Paywall!

      Ha! Even when you do pay you're the product. Do you seriously doubt that? I'm positive that thousands upon thousands of examples could be cited.

       

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    Scote, Oct 30th, 2012 @ 11:36am

    Sooo...they can pay 30 people to mod comments but can't pay their **writers**??????

    Sooo...they can pay 30 people to mod comments but can't pay their **writers**??????

    HuffPo seems an even bigger rip off now than ever.

     

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      Mike Masnick (profile), Oct 30th, 2012 @ 11:46am

      Re: Sooo...they can pay 30 people to mod comments but can't pay their **writers**??????

      Sooo...they can pay 30 people to mod comments but can't pay their **writers**??????


      Huffpo has a pretty large staff of paid reporters.

       

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      Rikuo (profile), Oct 30th, 2012 @ 11:46am

      Re: Sooo...they can pay 30 people to mod comments but can't pay their **writers**??????

      HuffPo writers volunteer to write their articles for free. In return, they get reputation. So, someone who writes extremely popular articles for a year on HuffPo can look forward to a cushy job with another publisher; think of it like the portfolio of artwork a prospective student looking to get into an arts course in college would need.

       

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        Scote, Oct 30th, 2012 @ 11:52am

        Re: Re: Sooo...they can pay 30 people to mod comments but can't pay their **writers**??????

        Indeed, nobody forces people to write for HuffPo for free, but the "think of the exposure you'll get" is a classic line that has been used by exploitative producers for decades, if not centuries.

         

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          Leigh Beadon (profile), Oct 30th, 2012 @ 1:00pm

          Re: Re: Re: Sooo...they can pay 30 people to mod comments but can't pay their **writers**??????

          Indeed, nobody forces people to write for HuffPo for free, but the "think of the exposure you'll get" is a classic line that has been used by exploitative producers for decades, if not centuries.

          Sure, but it's also been used sincerely by people who were actually offering valuable exposure to others who then used it to launch a career.

          Exposure is a genuinely valuable commodity -- but it's obviously very difficult to quantify. "Audience size" is such a small part of the equation -- the nature of the audience, the nature of the work, the size of the creator's existing fan-base/audience, and plenty of other factors all effect how valuable exposure is. The value of a creator's time is similarly nebulous -- there's no "this is how much economic return i should get for each hour i spend working on anything" metric that applies to all writers, or that even remains consistent for one writer.

          In any area where you have something that is undoubtedly valuable but is also difficult to count and compare, you have the possibility for exploitation. Start setting up trades between two hard-to-quantify things -- exposure and creation -- and it really does come down to the ability of individuals to make wise decisions and estimates. It's not as easy as selling widgets for cash, and it is potentially easier for some people to exploit others, but none of that invalidates the value on either side of the equation.

           

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    TerribleSpy, Oct 30th, 2012 @ 11:59am

    What about the writers?

    Granted the HuffPo doesn't pay writers. What about 'moderating' the opinion of writers and columnists? I know someone who writes freelance for various PC magazines who went to 'the mall' recently to buy Windows 8 and a Surface tablet. He walked away based on his interactions with the store's staff who actively tried not to help him. Although he actively defriends people who pull the Mac vs. PC debate on his FB wall, he did marvel that just across the Mall the Apple Store was doing booming business. And that every sales associate was actively trying to help him _solve his problem_ (not the same thing as sell him a computer). Will his little FB rant ever appear as a column in the PC magazines where he appears? That remains to be seen. Faulting Microsoft in print isn't a good strategy for a magazine that want to continue publishing. I wonder if my friend will stay silent on this or post a YELP review or email someone in Microsoft corporate directly to provide them with the feedback that they're customer service sucks dead bunnies. Before he publishes his opinion in print along with comments from various Microsoft sources. His main job is 'plotting revenge for a living' and he's been writing for 40+ years so I don't think he'll go hungry.

    Moderating what 'the great unwashed' (e.g. the general public) says on your website is just good business. Keeps the lawyers at bay. I'm sure Techdirt's had to pay lawyers regarding user comments on more than one occasion.

     

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      Anonymous Coward, Oct 30th, 2012 @ 12:37pm

      Re: What about the writers?

      I stopped buying most computer magazines because of the very bias you point out.

       

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      nasch (profile), Oct 31st, 2012 @ 9:04am

      Re: What about the writers?

      I'm sure Techdirt's had to pay lawyers regarding user comments on more than one occasion.

      Interesting, why are you so sure of that? I know they've mentioned how they responded to some legal threats they got, and it sure wasn't with money. Given how Mike feels about third party liability and anti-SLAPP laws, I find it very unlikely they would settle any such lawsuit.

       

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    identicon
    Wes Finley, Oct 30th, 2012 @ 12:03pm

    As a former CNN.com employee I would assume a 'mismatch' is something like -- an ad for Delta appearing on a plain crash story because of keyword analysis. We had to keep an eye out for things like that.

    As these mismatches can seem insensitive to consumers and damaging to advertisers it is pretty much in everyones' interest to avoid them.

     

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      Rikuo (profile), Oct 30th, 2012 @ 12:09pm

      Re:

      Read the article please. This is about HuffPo moderating the comments to please the advertisers, not the articles themselves.

       

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        Anonymous Coward, Oct 30th, 2012 @ 12:48pm

        Re: Re:

        Wes does need to read the article... and I would love to hear about the "plain crash story" they ran over at cnn

         

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        snidely (profile), Oct 31st, 2012 @ 2:51am

        Re: Re:

        I think you guys are missing Wes' point. There might be a "mismatch" in what Mike got from the HuffPo statement. I also saw it more innocently that HuffPo might be trying to better match a story about golf with Titleist's ads rather than the Titleist ad appearing on a page about the hurricane. It might not be this sinister thing that advertisers can block comments and more about making the ads relevant to the comments.

         

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          nasch (profile), Oct 31st, 2012 @ 9:07am

          Re: Re: Re:

          I also saw it more innocently that HuffPo might be trying to better match a story about golf with Titleist's ads rather than the Titleist ad appearing on a page about the hurricane.

          "She reads everything submitted to HuffPost and helps the moderators do their jobs faster and more accurately. We’ve really done a lot with machine-assisted moderation, allowing us to pre-moderate 9.5 million comments a month, and Julia is core to that."

          It really sounds to me like they're talking about user comments, not articles.

           

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    Anonymous Coward, Oct 30th, 2012 @ 12:37pm

    You know, I used to go to gaming magazines to find out if it was worth buying. Then gaming houses got thin skin over critical reviews and started refusing to give promotional games to those reviewers if they didn't write up a sterling report. At that point, the review magazines stopped being a good source of info and I quit buying the magazines as you could no longer trust to get an honest review.

    As a result of lacking that info, my gaming purchased dropped dramatically. I had found that trial and error just gave me crap games I was no longer willing to buy that way. Since the lack of good sources of honest evaluation became rampant, the only way to know what was good or not was to try it before buying it.

    I'm also very much against the wild west of advertising. I know where to look to search for what I want when I want it. Any other time does not convince me to buy but rather convinces me to consider when I go to purchase a product if I've been pestered by that company lately with ads. If I have I'll seek another product than that one. The cost of advertising tacked on to the total cost of the product raises it's expense but does not improve the product. Advertising in it's many forms has become an annoyance of all of them clamoring for that grabbing your attention in a 5 second span. As much of it as there is you are exposed to, that's your whole day if you pay attention to it.

    It has become a pest industry much the same as spam. I see little or no difference between the two. If it is advertised, something is wrong with the product it will not sell on it's own merits.

     

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      nasch (profile), Oct 31st, 2012 @ 9:08am

      Re:

      Since the lack of good sources of honest evaluation became rampant, the only way to know what was good or not was to try it before buying it.

      I didn't know it was possible to have a rampant absence of something. ;-)

       

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

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    trish, Oct 30th, 2012 @ 12:44pm

    Costume idea

    Techdirt joke: The best part of Halloween is, everything in my wardrobe qualifies as a pirate costume. ^_^

     

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    jokerscool, Oct 30th, 2012 @ 1:59pm

    HuffPost AOL death kiss

    huff post is dead now that AOL advertisement has taken over and Arianna cashed out

     

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    art guerrilla (profile), Oct 31st, 2012 @ 8:30am

    tech dirt does it right...

    MAJOR kudos to techdirt/mike for having a VERY reasonable comment system which is pretty much free speech friendly...

    huffpoo ? not so much...
    forget about any 'ad related' CENSORSHIP, they just plain CENSOR ALL the freaking time...

    besides the tabloidy feel it rapidly evolved into, i don't go there because they CENSORED others for simply being contrary to the received wisdom they espoused...

    really, it is just a left-ish wing-ish echo chamber, not unlike any reichwing site you visit who never allows a discouraging word to be heard...

    (of course, reichwing sites will allow nutjob libtards to spout crazy-talk, 'cause they can then laugh and point at the crazy libtard...)

    don't step in the huffpoo ! !!

    art guerrilla
    aka ann archy
    eof

     

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    A. Nnoyed (profile), Oct 31st, 2012 @ 3:58pm

    Trying to defuse the anger in the Trayvon Martin case.

    I live 25 Miles from Sanford Florida and am very concerned that the Trayvon Martin case may eventually lead to rioting if George Zimmerman is found not guilty. I have tried to start a dialog in the Trayvon Martin section of Huffington Post to defuse the anger. Any comments about the case are either not shown or immediately deleted after being posted. Several of my comments have been Faved only to be deleted. All that is posted is the columns are incendiary language between the pro Trayvon Martin faction and the pro George Zimmerman faction. The first thing that must be done is to discredit the people who are instigating the incendiary rhetoric. The Huffington Post seems to be trying to keep the anger alive rather than quelling it. Any criticism of the race baiters and haters agitating their base is deleted.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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