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Monday, April 25, 2016

Newspapers begin trolling

The Mercury News in California announced a new fee newspapers will charge online readers in the desperate hope to return newspaper revenues to the Cash Cow Days of the 20th century. This will not happen, but they will try charging readers to comment on their stories anyway,

Um-kay.

From the Mercury News:
Trolls take blow as news websites move toward pay-to-comment model.
Soon, only wealthy trolls may be able to spread racism, misogyny and incomprehensible gobbledygook in news website comment sections.
In a blow to the legions of angry, frustrated and otherwise voiceless folks sitting in front of sticky laptops in mommy and daddy’s basement, a movement is growing among media companies to make people pay for the privilege of commenting on news stories, Bloomberg reported Wednesday.
Publishers have long been frustrated by the widespread hijacking of comment sections by trolls, and the costs of policing the comments to weed out the worst vitriol and libel. In 2014, Recode, Reuters, The Week and Mic all deleted their comment sections, following the lead of the Chicago Sun-Times and Popular Science, according to the Harvard-based journalism think tank NiemanLab.
Over the weekend, Tribune Publishing, owner of the Los Angeles Times and Chicago Tribune, started up a system at the San Diego Union-Tribune’s website that lets readers earn points by posting comments, making regular site visits – or coughing up cash, according to Bloomberg. For $1, readers get 22 points; for $10, they get 800. A minimum of 15 points buys placement in the “promoted comments” section. Commenters lose points for violating rules about relevance, respect, honesty and discretion.
That's an interesting approach to community relations: View all commenters as trolls.

But actual trolls charge money to cross the bridge. Newspapers that post this charge are trolling. But it is their bridge and they can do whatever they want.



13 comments:

  1. Another Obama legacy! It will cost you dollahs for free speech. Alles Heil Sieg Heil! The Left is completely out of control at this point, but their brand is shriveling before our eyes. Kinda like it, actually...

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  2. Drudge or Don will get more powerful as fewer people go to the original site for the packaged lie and rely only on the headline or excerpts to get the real "news". Good

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  3. The local newspaper and TV websites that do have comments are pathetic. I've tried to post a pithy comment a number of times, but so far none of them have seemed to make it past the "Moderator." I wonder if there actually IS a "Moderator" or if they just use that as a facafe for throwing all of the comments into the bit bucket behind the computer.

    Also, Charleston Newspapers will let you read ten articles per month for free, then they cut off all except the first few sentences and tell you that you need to buy a subscription to continue reading. Do they realize that all I need to do is copy and paste the article headline into Google and the entire article pops right up for me? It's no wonder newspapers are going broke. - Elric

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    Replies
    1. Or you can try browsing privately. Or you can go into your browser settings and delete their cookie. Some subscription services use a cookie to keep track of the number of times you've visted their site. If you delete it, you can start viewing for free all over again.

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  4. Perhaps the Mercury News is feeling the heat, since commenters often are funnier and more intelligent than most editorial boards. Can't have the proles start thinking for themselves!

    Some years ago I got banned from commenting on the local KBTX TV station's website because I linked to the Des Moines Register's infamous column by Donald Kaul in which he called for the torture and murder of Republican leaders because they opposed gun control. Perhaps quoting the media's own published words constitutes "racism, misogyny and incomprehensible gobbledygook".

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  5. I quit paying for the newspaper over ten years ago. Never paying for news again.

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  6. My local paper is so far up into the Democrats' rear end I stopped buying it. I won't pay to read their biased "news" and I'd never pay to post a comment on their web site. If I'm not stopping by their web site to read their "news" or post a comment on their discussion board, they don't get to count me as one more page view for their advertisers.

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  7. I mostly avoid newspaper comment sections because they have the least knowledgeable commenters on the internet, and I have never exceeded the article quota at any online newspaper.

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  8. Anyone who would pay to comment on any website is a sad, sad person. Or being compensated by George Soros to comment. Or both. In all cases, a leftist.

    Steve in Greensboro

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    1. Good three ball Steve...nothin but net. One of my uncles lived in your town for a long time before he passed. Great city, great people. Rock on bro...

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    2. I wondered about that. The "Proles Not Welcome" attitude of the Mercury News could be a shakedown effort designed to open Soros' wallet.

      Most newspaper editorial boards and publishers are illiterate when it comes to economics and business, so deliberately giving their customers the middle finger is not surprising. But progressives definitely know how to get cash out of a sugardaddy!

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  9. Great idea, Mercury. Can't miss: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=fO_-esmcsv4

    Wasn't mercury poisoning the reason for "mad hatters"?

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  10. Calling one's commenters "Trolls" is sure to endear them. I dropped the state-wide paper many years back, and my local maybe 5 years ago. They have had a 5-free-in-a-month on their website.

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