Matt Cutts Devours Babies?


Digital Ghost explains his disgust of linkbait:

I’m a country boy, and the first thing I think of when someone mentions ‘bait’ is ‘trap’. That’s exactly what linkbait has become. The lure for a trap. Sensationalist headlines crafted for the sole purpose of luring readers into a story that is either devoid of truth or a story that contains a mere hint of truth.


History repeating

Compare and contrast with the British tabloid press in the 80s. Headlines like the infamous "Freddie Starr Ate My Hamster" drove short term sales, while robbing the same papers of their last shreds of credibility.

The attitude of editors was sales (read: traffic) by any means necessary.

Sound familiar?

Link Bait Friday?

It is tradition to get Matt to respond to link bait on Fridays.

The crew should be coming back from Chicago soon, doesn't Adam Lasnik eat babies as well?

In some parts of the world...'s very rude not to eat babies with the rest of the clan.

Dunno about Matt tho. Or Adam.

The article is linkbait

just check out that headline:

"Linkbait is the New Bullshit"

(...making my point with bold helps too...)

Linkbait is only a symptom of the "problem" which is Too Much Information (TMI). It's marketing amidst info overload.

The problem is not too much

The problem is not too much information, the problem is limited attention span and audience share in a saturated marketplace.

The problem is a lack of

The problem is a lack of creativity on all fronts. Bloggers write "he said..they said" garbage, SEO's argue about how many keywords belong in the title tag, scammers mislead to protect their very shaky ground, and the search engines play the propaganda game instead of working on the real problems.

It's not too much information, but too little.

Mmm. Delicious babies--great

Mmm. Delicious babies--great with barbecue sauce! Yum!

Google launches new BPC campaign

(babies per click)

We should put a stop to this...

There is no excuse for all of this BS linkbaiting going on. I mean, honestly, it is nothing more than Yellow Journalism, and perhaps far less and just outright lies for profit. Come on folks, where are your white hats? Where are your ethics? Your calls to morality?

How do you sleep at night with your senseless posts to Digg and your top 10 lists on Firefox Apple Widgets? How is our industry to survive with such drivel? I am going to take a stand against linkbait today, beginning with this post!

>> sales (read: traffic) by any means necessary


i can see where DG's indignation is coming from - if you're looking to make your blog a paragon of authoritative information, then splashy headlines and innuendo should probably be avoided.

but i don't agree with the conclusion. bullshit is not always bad. bullshit can, in fact, be highly entertaining and profitable. last time i checked, cesspools like US Weekly and The Enquirer were some of the only print publications i never hear bitching about declining readership and profits.

bullshit sells quite nicely, depending on your market.

Come on Grasshopper...

Satire, Irony, Sarcasm, a sense of freaking humor....

if you're looking to make your blog a paragon of authoritative information, then splashy headlines and innuendo should probably be avoided.


Info overload / underload

The problem is too much worthless information, and not enough worthwhile information. (just to clear that up for myself.)

And in that climate are readers who don't read and a saturated marketplace. Info overload. Quality info underload.

Which brings out linkbait marketing tactics, which work in this climate.


not sure i'm understanding your meaning, Str0ud. little help?


I think I may have read your comment in a way in which you did not intend. I only meant that there are lots of respected journalistic sources that use irony, satire, and humor as means to communicate a complicated idea succinctly.

As an apology, I think I came across with a bit more piss and vinegar than I intended. It's Friday, I should loosen up.

no apology necessary

if we were the kind of people that DG was calling out in his post, we'd start up an insubstantial but vitriolic flame war and really get this thread rolling ;)

thankfully, i don't think we are.

I agree with "DG" on this

I agree with "DG" on this issue. It seems to me that at one time "link bait" was valid. Unfortunately those who hunt links at all cost now use sensationalism to get links. To hell with the content of the post. To hell with the accuracy of the post. Use a sensational title to get those links.

Oh yeah, BABY: the other

Oh yeah, BABY: the other OTHER white meat! Baby: it's what's for Deener!
- Fat Bastard, Austin Powers

This thread went way to serious. But back OT, while I agree with DG, so-called real journalists have been resorting more frequently to sensationalism for eyeballs and lets not forget TV has sweeps week, so what do you expect bloggers to do? Take the high road?


I guess the mods are asleep at this hour. Dig the spam-a-rama comment immediately above this post.

I guess I'm wrong

The moment I posted and the screen refreshed, el spam-o was gone. :)


Slow couple of days... or is it that a few people need a life?

I saw the spam post, too,

I saw the spam post, too, lots0 (it was just above lots0's). This is the kind of thing that Akismet quarantines.

Mother is still around.

Mother is still around. (inside joke)

LOL. :)

LOL. :)

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