They say a picture is worth a thousand words, but how much is a title worth? If the story that proceeds is any indicator, a title is worth over 6700 words and months of research. It all began Friday when the New York Times published an article “How Companies Learn Your Secrets“. It was an extremely long article which discussed how large companies like WalMart and Target collect data about your individual consumption patters to figure out how to most efficiently make you happy. It was a great piece but there was one problem: it didn’t have the title it deserved.
The original title was “How Companies Learn Your Secrets”. Kashmir Hill, a writer at Forbes, realized this and quickly developed a condensed version of the article with a far more powerful title: “How Target Figured Out A Teen Girl Was Pregnant Before Her Father Did“. It cut out the crap and got to the real shocker of the story. As of the writing of this story, the New York Times article has 60 likes and shares on Facebook versus 12,902 which the Forbes article has. The Forbes article also has a mind boggling 680,000 page views, a number that can literally make a writer’s career.
Forbes did some journalism this weekend.
First, we need to cut those page views in half, since the article, like all Forbes articles, is spread out over two pages and with no single page option.
Then we need to murder anyone who would allow copying an article (I’m not accusing her of plagiarism, but the linkbait title and bare-bones recounting of a longer article is bullshit) to count as a positive for anyone.
This year’s WFMU fund-raising marathon starts February 20th, and as an enticement, the station’s d.j. Michael Shelley has created a special tribute album in which contemporary rock and pop artists cover their favorite Top 40 hits from the seventies. All songs were recorded for the compilation only. It’s not available in stores, physical or digital. The only way to get it is to make a pledge to the station.
Click to listen to Yo La Tengo’s cover of Todd Rundgren’s “I Saw the Light.” For three more exclusive previews, Ben Greenman’s take on each, and the full album list: http://nyr.kr/y6gbq8
Last year, when Ol’ Dirty Bastard died, there had been rumors about him possibly doing the the voice of Mister Ed in the Fox TV remake of the series. Then today in my inbox arrived this mp3 (right-click to download) of the alleged audition. Is it true? Did Dirty really try out for the role of talking horse? And while you research the possibilities, experience ODB’s interpretation of Phil Collins Sussudio from Brian Turner’s show of 11/23/04 (streaming realaudio).