The Daily Mail is currently the UK’s most popular online newspaper. This is not because there loyal readers have followed them online however. It is because they have a very canny person in charge of their online content.
One of the ways the Mail attracts their online audience by posting semi pornographic up-skirt and down-blouse photos of celebs getting out of cars. Hardly conforming to the middle-England standards the paper purports to represent.
The other way they boost their stats though is by engaging in a bit of twitter baiting.
Here’s the formula:
- Commission a hack journalist to write a controversial, provocative, and badly researched article.
- Attach a even more controversial and provocative headline to it
- Publish and be damned
- Wait for the outraged tweets, Facebook, and blog posts to roll in. All with a nice little link to the site attached of course.
- Collect the revenues from the advertisers, who don’t give a shit why the person is hitting the page – as long as they are hitting it.
To paraphrase the mighty Wikipedia, an internet troll is:
Someone who posts inflammatory, extraneous, or off-topic messages with the primary intent of provoking other users into a desired emotional response.
The daily mail is a troll. And as we know, the golden rule with trolls is that we mustn’t feed them. They are a bit like gremlins in that respect.
So next time you see a headline like
Not now, Darling, Mummy’s Tweeting: As today’s mothers spend hours on the internet, what’s the toll on their neglected children?
Just ignore the bastards. We already know that it’s going to be a pile of bullshit, so what’s the point in raising your blood pressure about it. Don’t visit the site, don’t tweet about it, don’t post an outraged message toy your Facebook wall, and never, ever blog about it.
Actually, if you do want to read a Daily Mail article but don’t want to give them a stat hit, then you can allways go here: http://istyosty.com/ (Thanks for the link Oli)