Content Farm Hell: This Week’s Awesome Roundup About Why Good Content Matters
Have you ever wondered what it would be like to make tennis shoes on a sweatshop factory assembly line? Just ask a few writers at content farms (DM, AC, TB), and other exploitative media companies.
This week, a content sweatshop worker speaks out, The New York Times lambasts content farms, and an analyst charts the decline of Demand Media’s search rankings.
Here’s the most awesome content about content (Panda Edition) for the week ending July 1, 2011:
Oliver Miller spent a year writing for AOL. He wrote more than 350,000 words – the length of several novels – on a graveyard shift with half hour deadlines. His sobering article in The Faster Times this week shows off his writing prowess and opens eyes to the content farm insanity.
via The Faster Times
Virginia Heffernan’s column about content farms, inspired in part by Miller’s confessional, is an icy slap in the face to AOL Seed/Patch, Associated Content, Demand Media, declaring them (or sections of them) bad for the web. “The insultingly vacuous and frankly bizarre prose of the content farms — it seems ripped from Wikipedia and translated from the Romanian — cheapens all online information.” So true.
Tim Chen breaks down the numbers surrounding Google’s most recent effect on Demand Media in the search engine’s quest for content purity. In a study of 5,000 keywords, half of Ehow’s results were slashed from the top 10 search results in the past 4 months. Chen then takes apart a recent Goldman Sachs analysis of Demand in a nerdy, yet awesome, fashion.
We’re outspoken about our stance on content farms: they’re polluting the Internet and screwing journalists. It’s good to see we’re not alone in feeling that way.