Jul 11, 2016

MMMM # 543 --- When is News Media not News Media?


     I used the Google Machine's news aggregator all day long. It is usually a simple way to gather news from across the news world in one place and see what is being reported.

     But twice in the past few days I've asked how in the world an item managed to be caught in the google Algorithm.
  
     The first is a blog that used an x-rated headline, a reference a legitimate news outlet would never include. The second, a make-believe "news" product that is actually PR. 

     That latter page offers a glowing report about Governor Bentley's taxpayer paid trip to Europe for an airshow. 
     Until as recently as yesterday, there was a grayed-out credit to "Alabama Power" at the top of the page. Now it's described as a product of the Alabama Department of Commerce.
     I first posted about this site a year ago, and if you follow this link you'll see the old AlaPowCo credit at top. The utility has the right to put out "news" about itself, of course, but it should be clearly marked as a PR product, not stories from The "Alabama News Center".
    Is AlaPowCo now providing support in any form to the new operators? Or is it funded strictly by Alabama taxpayers through the Commerce Department? Those are increasingly important questions as news consumers are thrown into the Wild West of internet "news". 

[The Monday Morning Media Memo is a regular feature of www.TimLennox.com]

Created 2007

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