Profiting from the Virginia Shooting, and Other Big Stories

Last week I blogged the news that media outlets were buying search ads on keywords like

Last week I blogged the news that media outlets were buying search ads on keywords like "virginia shooting," to drive traffic to their sites. That sparked my curiosity about what else the marketing and tech side does to assist the day a big story hits. So I teamed up with reporter Paula Lehman, and in this week's issue, we took a look.

In the first post on this, I suggested that buying links in this way seemed tacky. While I was reporting the story, others argued that paid search ads were no different than the newsies of yesteryear shouting "extra!" on the street corner. I think that's a valid point, though I'm still undecided.

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