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mister dize
04-25-2009, 10:45 PM
I've held off on saying anything about this for a while, but Calguns does love to post about anti-gun pieces in the media. I think it is useful to know how the online media works, especially here. I am a professional writer in the technology beat, but what I am about to tell you applies to all online media, and some of it to print media.



Writers get paid by the word.

The average is around 50 cents for online media, sometimes as high as $3 for publications like the New York Times or the Wall Street Journal. Because of this, writers, for the most part, are just cranking stuff out. We don't have a complex plan that we're following to push an agenda. We come up with an idea we think will sell, pitch it to our editor, and if he says yes, we write it. When you see an anti-gun piece in the New York Times, it's not because NYT is launching a big PR campaign against guns. Some writer is short on topics, and pulled an evergreen out of his desk.


Many publications pay pageview bonuses.

This is why we write about controversial topics. While not all publications pay this bonus, your value as a writer is measured by the online page views you bring in. When you post a link to an anti-gun article on Calguns, you are putting money in the writer's pocket. Also, publications count comments as pageviews, and sometimes more than once, if you have to click to page separate from the article to read and post comments. If you post a comment on an article expressing your disagreement with the author, not only will that author get paid for you reading the article, but also for you responding to it!



Editors have a lot of control over what gets printed.

If a writer pitches a gun story to an editor, and writes it, what you read isn't always what was written. Editors can change everything from small grammar fixes to the entire tone of the article. By adding a sentence here and there, a clever editor can mince the author's words to make a neutral piece into an anti-gun piece. The worst part of it is, you never know who is doing this or how much they are doing. You do not see who the editor is when you read an article, only the author's name appears in the byline. But remember: the editor's job is to make money for the company. They do this by getting pageviews, which comes from controversy.



The media is still a business. The more people that consume it, the more money the publications make. We, as the opposition to the anti-gun media, are feeding this. I can guarantee you that if pageviews for gun pieces dropped significantly, the editors would see to it that gun pieces didn't go to print.

What i'm saying is, anti-gun media stories will go away if nobody reads them.

N6ATF
04-25-2009, 11:28 PM
That will be difficult as long as we keep posting links to them so we can post in the comment sections - which by and large end up favoring our side.

MP301
04-26-2009, 4:41 AM
Very interesting. I dont think most of us were aware of this. Its also a tough problem to not read these articles because its important that we know what is going on in this realm.

The only suggestion I would have to curb the number of "page views" is that the first person discovering the article post the entire article without the link, so that all of us here ca.n read it, but not promote it.

One could add a small disclaimer refering to this post requesting that we dont go to the article and that we dont comment so as not to put money in the anti's pockets...be it the author or the editor....

This would kind of explain that USA today poll that has been around since christ was a corporal and keeps popping up here. One woud have thought it would have been long removed from circulation.

Good info, thanks for the post!

Librarian
04-26-2009, 11:37 AM
The only suggestion I would have to curb the number of "page views" is that the first person discovering the article post the entire article without the link, so that all of us here can read it, but not promote it.


Not that it's likely to get prosecuted, but that's a copyright violation - which is why I don't do it.

Now, if one took the time to fisk it, that would be Fair Use (criticism/commentary), and there's no real standard for how much commentary there needs to be.

Ugly problem. Don't want to support anti-gun stuff, don't want to violate the law to avoid that.

Thanks, mister dize. My new thing for the day.

damon1272
04-26-2009, 12:17 PM
Thanks for the insight into the media world. Gives all something to chew on.

MrBi11
04-26-2009, 5:39 PM
Not that it's likely to get prosecuted, but that's a copyright violation - which is why I don't do it.

Now, if one took the time to fisk it, that would be Fair Use (criticism/commentary), and there's no real standard for how much commentary there needs to be.

Ugly problem. Don't want to support anti-gun stuff, don't want to violate the law to avoid that.

Thanks, mister dize. My new thing for the day.


INAL but I think if you copy in it's entirety with credit give to the source without making any charges for viewing, copyright laws won't apply

mister dize
04-26-2009, 7:16 PM
INAL but I think if you copy in it's entirety with credit give to the source without making any charges for viewing, copyright laws won't apply

I'm not a copyright attorney, but as I understand it, here's how copyright violations on the internet go down:

If you reproduce someone's work and they object to it, they send a notice to the service provider (in this case Calguns), to take down the offending work. Calguns is not liable for any damages if they comply with the request. Calguns also must have a policy in place to ban "repeat offenders" of copyright violation.

In any event, it's a civil matter. The police won't show up at your door for violating copyright.

Librarian
04-26-2009, 8:59 PM
INAL but I think if you copy in it's entirety with credit give to the source without making any charges for viewing, copyright laws won't apply

That might protect you from accusations of plagiarism, but using whole works, without the permission of the copyright owner, is a no-no.
How much of someone else's work can I use without getting permission?
Under the fair use doctrine of the U.S. copyright statute, it is permissible to use limited portions of a work including quotes, for purposes such as commentary, criticism, news reporting, and scholarly reports. There are no legal rules permitting the use of a specific number of words, a certain number of musical notes, or percentage of a work. Whether a particular use qualifies as fair use depends on all the circumstances. See FL 102, Fair Use, and Circular 21, Reproductions of Copyrighted Works by Educators and Librarians.

http://www.copyright.gov/help/faq/faq-fairuse.html#howmuch

Telperion
04-26-2009, 9:40 PM
How about using the Coral cache (www.coralcdn.org) when linking to stories? Take any webpage and add .nyud.net to the end of the address and it will cache the page and likely reduce pageviews (and load) to the source.

Nah, too much work.

Legasat
04-26-2009, 10:21 PM
Thanks for the insight. When I think about it, it makes sense. I guess I never thought about it.