Hi, my name is D and this is my writings on subjects. I'm no rapscallion or anything at all. If you want to you can read my writings on subjects if you have free time. If you want to argue with me or call me names then please comment. Negative feedback is very welcome...I love dat shit. Me? I'm not even a noun, I'm a fucking verb, dude.

Friday, December 9, 2016

Re-Vistin' "Fake News"

So many people are writing 'bout "Fake News" these days. The media is talkin' 'bout it, everyone down at the driving range is talking about it, everyone down at the batting cages, even the Pope is talking about it ... blah blah blah. It's nothing new though. The Internet is full of garbage ... it always has been. It should be the Third Eternal Truth,

1. Death
2. Taxes
3. The Internet is Laden with Asinine Garbage

I did a big long article on this topic back in 2011,

This one right here: "on Deception and counter-Deception. also on Devising and/or Deciphering Informations"

Sweet Vermouth, whatta title, wow. I used to be better at this writing shit ... 2011 to 2013 is like my prime. I was drinking a lot of coffee and punching up words right fast and good back then. In that article I ended by linking people to links on how to tell if something is photoshopped and to Snopes and other things. That was 5 years ago ... the proliferation of junk on the internet has grown exponentially since then.

Alrighty, gonna do it two sections on this one. We're gonna look at the process of making "Fake News" and how easy it is and then we will play the blame game and point fingers.

The Process

Making money with crazy and alarming news stories is pretty easy. You are one 15 dollar URL, one 15 dollar web hosting fee, and one account with WordPress away from making your own Fake News site.

Okay, hold up, why call it "Fake News" for? Fake News is how Norm MacDonald used to open Weekend Update ... it's a term that shouldn't be pejorative. Fake News should be associated with humor and satire ... it's not the correct term to apply to alarming click-bating propaganda.

In the old days Newz was funny at least
The correct term to apply to this phenomenon is "Garbage" or one I like to use which is "Newz." There should be two kinds of News ... with a S and with a Z. The one with an S is where professionals do professional reporting of events and Newz with a Z is the Newz where Hillary Clinton gives birth to Big Foot's baby or Ben Carson gives birth to Big Foot's Ghost Baby.

Okay so, you right now sitting there reading this are a hop, skip, and jump ... or URL, web hosting fee, and WordPress account away from being a purveyor of Newz. Now how do you get them to go Viral? You don't ... Facebook, Reddit, Twitter and other social media will do that for you ... if you have an alarming enough title and post it to certain high traffic groups, forums, and spruce it up with a photo and some trending hashtags ... your article will be have great exposure.

Once you have hits and a fanbase ... put Google ads and Amazon ads on your site. Google will pay per 1000 visitors and a lot for people clicking on the ads. Amazon will pay you for people who bought something on their site after being referred to it from your site.

That's all well and good but that's not how you really make any money. You need to gimmick the ads up quite a bit. You need to place the ads in places where people scroll on their phones so they accidentally hit the ad. So you put the ads in the middle of a post so they hit it while scrolling with their finger. Stuff like that.

To gimmick up Amazon you write about products ... like say you have a Nostalgia Blog about the nineties you can make a post about some retro thing that has been re-made and is being sold ... link to it on Amazon and you get referral money for people who bought the chachkie or widget or whatever it was. That what it's meant for but Newz people go a whole other route with this ....

The worst Newz gimmick is to sell products from Amazon or their own distributors and write crazy pieces of Newz to make it seem like you need this product. The Naturo/Organic sect does this ... they will make a Newz story like "Chemicalz found in your Soup!" and do 400 words on how some scary chemical was found in something you use often .... and they will retail on their website some version of this that is "safe" for you. So if soup has chemicalz in the example ... they have "Organic Raw Canadian Alps of Sweden Vegan Chem-Free Soup" cans for sale at the bottom of the article. This one is particularly dangerous because these people tend to risk public health in many cases where they go as far to say that the soup or whatever can cure aids/cancer/etc and readers buy it and really believe that it can.

Newz is not a hard shtick... but it's the dark side. If you want to do it, fine, but it's not right. As stated above, 2011-2013, was my prime and this site was getting a pretty decent amount of hits ... but even then when some articles were being read like crazy ... I didn't put ads on here. Why? I don't know ... I probably should have .... but these writings are a hobby for me that I actually like doing and I don't want to gimmick it up and make it stupid. I like doing this.

The Legend, Bubba.
I heard a story once that Telly Savalas used to go gambling all night long ... lose all of his money .... and then with his last dollar bill ... he'd go buy a cup of coffee. He'd take his time and drink the coffee real slow, look at it and smell it, and really savor the dollar he spent on it ... because after an all night gambling escapade it was his last dollar to his name that he bought that cup of coffee with ... and when the coffee was finished ... he'd dispose of it the garbage can ... look up at the sky and proclaim .... "NOW I FEEL CLEAN!"

When he had no money to his name is the only moment he felt "clean."

I think that's what this outlet is for me ... it's Clean. There's no money involved in writing these for me and I don't make any money doing this. It's just a Clean unpolluted outlet for me to express my thoughts and opinions and shit. After finishing one of these I can look up and say ... "I FEEL CLEAN!"

If I put ads on this it would change the content ... it would very quickly become a writing formula of ...

1. Look what's globally trending on Twitter and Facebook and pick a topic.
2. Take 5 minutes and write an Asininely Alarming and Ridiculous 250 word piece of absolute Trash.
3. Spend the next 2 hours putting links to it on every social media and high traffic forum on the internet.

That's not a fun hobby. I do this because I like doing it and I wouldn't like doing that. Promotion is boring. When I first started this blog I linked to it on media/forums maybe 5 times in total .... that was already 6 years ago now. I have never promoted this outlet ... at all in 6 years. If you're seriously interested in doing Newz you gotta focus on promotion and not content. You have to get the link to the article on as many high traffic areas as possible ... you need about 5 minutes to produce the content and then spend 10x amount of time on linking to it.

Another gimmick they are using, and this one is pretty bad, is to label the Newz website with something very similar to a News website. So the person will call their outlet URL "MSNBC-7WORLD.com" or "CBS-CHANNEL8.com" and then when you see the link on facebook or twitter the reader thinks they are reading something from MSNBC or CBS if you just click on it read it and go.



Blame Game

You can't really blame the people making money with this. I mean, it works and there's nothing necessarily illegal about it.

The people running them are not rich people. It's poor kids with shitty computers in Macedonia, and street urchins from Russia, and people from South America. One that I found funny was Ron Paul's dopey Re-Love-Ution website was ran by a person from like Chile in South America. People thought it was his actual website but it was just aggregated newz and ads ran by someone out of South America. These people aren't exactly bad people ... their mostly poor people from poor countries who run these sites.

If you wanna point a finger at someone point it at fucking Facebook, man.

The new Facebook algorithm gets "featured content" into the news feed even if the person has an ad-blocker. So now you have no choice but to be exposed to Newz on social media ... and the "featured content" ratio in the facebook news feed is RIDICULOUS! It's like 1/5 ... like 4 actual posts from people/groups/news you have in the feed and then 1 from something someone paid for users to see. That's a pretty silly ratio ... like one out of every five things in Facebook now is a paid-content headline in the form of "8 Things that You have to See about _______."

It's garbage ad-nauseum. In an election cycle what are those blanks in those garbage lists? It's articles of "10 things you didn't know about this party" .... "5 things that will shock you about this person who is running" ..... and what are the most shared ones by users? The more alarming or shocking ones are the most shared by users to their friends. So in an election cycle the most shared articles are ones like "Can You Believe what Clinton just did!?" or "Can You Believe the Latest thing Trump just Said?"  and it matters to no one who is sharing them if they are true or totally 100% outright fabrications.

In my opinion, for what it's worth, Ad Blockers should not be illegal or banned or worked-around on Social Media ... AD BLOCKERS SHOULD BE 100% LEGAL! Ad Blocking apps on browsers are one of the crowning achievements of the last decade .... they should be celebrated and not frowned upon. The guy who invented Ad Blockers on the internet should be given The Key to the City (the Internet City).


Conclusion

There was a time where maybe people could keep up somewhat on what was true and what wasn't on the stupid idiotic internet but the exponential rate of Newz exploding on the internet is to a degree where no one can keep up with all the crap and investigate all the nonsense that's out there. The bottom line seems to be that people will believe what they want and not-believe what they don't want to believe and I guess that makes them happy ... and that's the root of the problem.

It is no longer possible to get a handle on the situation of the erratic nature of information on the internet. The world is like 90% literate now and everyone is getting internet and wanting to contribute their 2 cents to it ... and they have the right to do that. There will always be a multitude of information on the internet and the VAST MAJORITY OF IT will be absolute nonsense. Absolute nonsense.

The answer as I've seen promoted by other people over the years is to teach Critical Thinking as a course in grade schools and high schools. We no longer live in an era of Small Information this is the era of Big Info ... almost limitless accounts from unlimited sources. The thing to do is not to try and censor or limit access to information but to instill at a young age the Art and Science of Analyzing Informations and how to think critically about incoming data. It's not about acquiring information anymore as you can read just about anything ever ... it's how to qualify information.

Children can be taught to read a language as early as 3 years old in many cases ... but children are never formally taught how to decipher what's important from what's not. Fallacies in logic should be taught to children as early as Grade 6, scientific method should be given at Grade 6. The kids all know HOW to read by that age but they don't know how to critically assess incoming information at that age and the earlier it's taught the better.

Sources from where data comes from must be taught in school. Kids understanding of "sources" at that age is something along the lines of "my parents said so .... so it must be true" ...  and this is carried over in the real world as "oh that person said it so it must be true" ... they should be taught that some sources of information are more trustworthy than others and that all sources can be questioned and held to standards.

In this era of Endless Information available on the Internet it's not enough to just teach the younger generation how to decipher a written language ... you must also teach how to critically and scientifically make an assessment of the written data.