Web Links As Money Makers

Friday, November 11, 2011


We run into them all the time, and usually we skip over them -- monetized links. They're the double-underlined hyperlinks you see on some websites which link to paid advertising content. But could these tiny links actually incentivize writers to skew their content for money? It may already be happening. Bob investigates.


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Comments [2]

Catherine Iino from Connecticut

I'm sorry to say that this story brought into focus for me a discomfort I've had with our local NPR station, WNPR in Connecticut. During pledge drives, the Faith Middleton Show, an afternoon talk show, turns into an infomercial, touting items during the entire hour of the show that are then offered as promotions in exchange for donations. Doesn't this seem to cross just the journalistic line you are talking about?

Nov. 13 2011 11:23 PM

Really loved this story and laughed out loud when I heard this line about online media: "the dividing line between editorial and advertising is less firewall than shower curtain."

The story struck a chord with me because I'm taking a digital journalism class and have been thinking about the viability of hard news online. When you start look at successful digital publishers like Gawker, it's obvious that much less attention is paid to ethics and independence than the hard news outlets. I don't think it *has* to be this way, and I think Wikileaks is an early indicator that it won't be this way for much longer, but at the moment, the public still gets hard news from print and television, and goes to the internet to satisfy niche interests.

Nov. 13 2011 11:26 AM

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