Clickbait Watch #10 🖱️

Getty Images / iStockphoto

Getty Images / iStockphoto

A reminder

Clickbait stories are meant to generate online clicks for the sole purpose of driving more traffic and hence generate more $$$ for an online publisher. This often means loud, extreme language used in the titles of stories. I guess not many people click on calm titles. 🤷

So what?

Clickbait leads to a rise in the volume and anxiety of your online news experience, or even misleading reporting. Each week we'll look at the most egregious clickbait titles, and after analyzing them, give them a less extreme title based on the actual information in the article.


Huffington Post: Anger grows against construction of new Machu Picchu airport

News Bling’s Suggestion: Anger grows against construction of new airport near Machu Picchu

Problem with title:  From the title, it sounds like they are building an airport right on top of the historic site.  It will actually be 36 miles away. Whether the airport will cause damage indirectly through excessive tourists is a legitimate concern, but it does not mean that Machu Picchu will now have runways and terminals running through it.  


CNN: Biden worked with Civil Rights opponent (link title)

News Bling’s Suggestion: Biden’s friendship with a former Civil Rights opponent explained

Problem with title:  This link title sounds like an exposé piece about a previously unknown tie to an anti-Civil Rights figure. In fact, Biden talked about his friendship with former Mississippi Senator John Stennis in his autobiography in 2008 – he is quite open about it. Biden said that he viewed Stennis as a changed man (Stennis voted to extend the Voting Rights Act in 1982, despite opposing it earlier). Biden also says he told Stennis he wanted to be a senator for “civil rights, sir,” and Stennis said “Good. Good. Glad to have you here.” Stennis was clearly anti-Civil Rights in his early days, but he appeared by his words and actions to have changed, and Biden's continued friendship with him seems to be a sign of recognizing progress rather than hypocrisy.

Ah, friendship.



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