ROMNEY WORDSWORTH – Hello, I’m back from a well deserved and enjoyable vacation. It was the kind of vacation that every true blooded American would enjoy: Guns, booze, and great food. I will save my observations of the sorry state of America’s airline industry for another column, however.
A topic that I noticed while on vacation, that I’ve been anxious to write about, was Faceboot’s (a.k.a. the tyrannical Facebook) recent announcement that it will be changing its algorithms to push down “click bait” articles to the back pages of its news feed.
Disclaimer: I am not a Faceboot User. I quit Faceboot several years ago when I saw the writing on the wall for the coming censorship campaign against Conservative Speech. Quitting Faceboot reduced my daily consumption of globalist propaganda by 666% and increased my daily productivity by 25%. Your results may vary.
What is “clickbait”? Everyone thinks they know what it means, but if you had to actually write an algorithm to eliminate it, you would discover how difficult it is to define. Generally, clickbait is anything that has an article title that does not live up to the actual content, thereby disappointing, annoying, or vexing the reader.
Says Faceboot: “If you’re a publisher, or you’re a content farm, and you post 50 things a day and 48 of them are clickbait, you’ll see a significant drop in referral traffic and reach,” said Adam Mosseri, vice president of product management for the News Feed, in an interview.
Faceboot identifies two categories of clickbait. The first category is for postings which have a “Curiosity Gap Headline”. Examples of this kind of headline include, but are not limited to: “You’ll never believe what happens next.” Or, “Thug attacks 98 year old woman, what comes next—Mother of God!” The second category has what Faceboot says is a misleading headline. Something like “Hillary Clinton up 15 points in latest poll”, and then when you read the article you find out the sample size was 15 people. All Democrats. From Massachusetts. Who belong to a government worker’s union.
That sort of thing.
Faceboot’s war on clickbait is insincere, and an excuse to suppress the conservatives and the free market. First of all, Faceboot is still full of paid commercial advertisements that fully meet the definition of clickbait. Either that, or I really am missing out on one easy trick to grow my penis to a 12 inch length. So, apparently clickbait is just fine as long as Faceboot is raking in money on it.
Secondly, sensational headlines have been part of journalism ever since Federalist muckrakers charged (falsely) that Thomas Jefferson sired a child with Sally Hemmings, or Democrat muckrakers attacked Abigail Adams as an arrogant, imperious First Lady. It is how journalists get themselves noticed in the crowded market place, which leads us to my third and most important point:
The paradigm being present here is completely counter to the free market. In every venue of the marketing industry, sensational headlines are used to attract consumers, no matter what the product or service is. This is known under the law as “puffery”, and it has been accepted by the Courts, who have turned away a string of plaintiffs complaining that their jar of peanut butter isn’t really “the best”, or of “the finest quality”.
Sensationalism sells. If you are selling a fast car, you are going to talk about the power of your engine, and fill your ad with superlatives. If you are a writer talking about the evils of the DemocRat Party, you want to also fill your column with superlatives…like the (true fact) that at the start of the Civil War, every black slave in America was owned by a DemocRat.
Faceboot would have you believe that the only proper style of writing is the sort of dry, fact dense article where everything all looks the same. No standing out in the crowd. It is akin to the makers of the Trabant (the old rattletrap car produced by the wonders of Soviet Communism) complaining about Porsche advertising the good looks and features of its 911 Carrera model. “Just say that it has 4 wheels and a steering wheel! Anything else is sensationalist clickbait!”
This is always the swan song of those who can’t compete in the marketplace. They turn to the government to try to shut up, and shut down, the competition. Faceboot is failing to compete in the Free Marketplace of Ideas. Conservative thought is beating the pants off of Marxist style Globalism everywhere it has a neutral platform to compete. Faceboot has a near monopoly in the ghetto of social media, so it will now simply use its power to weed out the competition, and remove thoughts it doesn’t like.
Don’t believe the talk about algorithms, either. In order to reach its goals, Faceboot is employing hundreds of real people to handpick winners, and identify political opponents to be made into losers. There’s a word for that. It’s called “CENSORSHIP”, and that is all the so-called “War on Clickbait” really is.