Frank Scavo has been somewhat fed up with Yahoo! recently. I don't blame him:
More #KeywordPimping on Yahoo Trending Now. Today, it's "Wireless Headphones" and "401(k) Plans"
— Frank Scavo (@fscavo) February 14, 2014
I wondered what he was on about until I visited Yahoo!'s US home page this morning:
When Frank was bemoaning Yahoo! there were only two offending items. I count four on the image I just clipped - if you count the impact of the horses viagra link. And you really, really must look up horses viagra - so appropriate the day after St. Valentines. <cough>
Is this an aberration? No it's not. Check the next image, clipped from the home page of Yahoo!'s UK site:I count three pimped keywords. English only sites? Au contraire - the fun continues: I'm counting two and a half if you kinda discount no.5 and/or no.8.
I've given up complaining about advertising. Like most people I know, I'm conditioned to tuning it out. But when I see stories co-mingled with advertising then I have to wonder whether Yahoo!'s business model has any hope of survival. I mean, do they take their readers for complete idiots or what? Is this indicative of a last throw of the dice in a race to the bottom?
I'm sure Yahoo! will argue that they're only exposing what they believe to be material that's trending and I suppose you can sort of get away with it in a world where real programming is what serves to fill in the space between advertising.
But then I wonder what someone visiting from another galaxy would make of the human condition if their first experience was Yahoo! Trending.