Dark secrets
of the   online overlords
very important things
  I won’t dwell on:
    •   social media
    •   partnerships & guest-blogging
    •   technology
  ...
what I will dwell on:
  sensibility
     &
    desire
P   ackage, repackage, repeat.
               Flickr photo courtesy of user scmgee.
lifehacker.com   I. Package, repackage, repeat
lifehacker.com   I. Package, repackage, repeat
lifehacker.com   I. Package, repackage, repeat
lifehacker.com   I. Package, repackage, repeat
lifehacker.com   I. Package, repackage, repeat
lifehacker.com   I. Package, repackage, repeat
packaging reinforces
packaging extends reach
stock and flow
andrewsullivan.theatlantic.com   I. Package, repackage, repeat.
thelede.blogs.nytimes.com   I. Package, repackage, repeat.
texastribune.org   I. Package, repackage, repeat.
mashable.com   I. Package, repackage, repeat.
mashable.com   I. Package, repackage, repeat.
mashable.com   I. Package, repackage, repeat.
talkingpointsmemo.com   I. Package, repackage, repeat.
S   treams, not stories.
             Flickr photo courtesy of user Mr. T in DC.
city room and l.a.now   II. Streams, not stories.
gothamist network   II. Streams, not stories.
city room vs. gothamist   II. Streams, not stories.
feed > post
subscriber > visitor
sfist.com   II. Streams, not stories.
sfist.com   II. Streams, not stories.
N   Umbering is narrative.
             Flickr photo courtesy of user svenwerk.
popurls.com   III. Numbering is narrative.
popurls.com   III. Numbering is narrative.
soulofthecommunity.org   III. Numbering is narrative.
soulofthecommunity.org   III. Numbering is narrative.
theatlantic.com   III. Numbering is narrative.
lists promise
comprehensiveness
lists promise
     limits
lists promise
  hierarchy
lists promise
  authority
themoneymeltdown.com   III. Numbering is narrative.
examples of guides from different sites   III. Numbering is narrative.
H   Eadlines are hooks.
            Flickr photo courtesy of user minifig.
“
Imagine you're writing a
headline for a magazine
      (one with tight deadlines)

rather than a newspaper.
            ...
Vs.


wired.com vs. gawker.com         IV. Headlines are hooks.
focus on implications,
      not events
nytimes.com vs. google news vs. gawker.com   IV. Headlines are hooks
Vs.



nytimes.com vs. google news vs. gawker.com   IV. Headlines are hooks
Vs.

                                    Vs.

nytimes.com vs. google news vs. gawker.com   IV. Headlines are hooks
1.Discover
                           2.Easy
                           3.Guarantee
                           4.Health
  ...
1.Top
                           2.Why
                           3.How
                           4.Will
                ...
C   ompete through co-optation.
                 Photo courtesy of the U.S. military.
andrewsullivan.theatlantic.com   V. Compete through co-optation.
andrewsullivan.theatlantic.com   V. Compete through co-optation.
npr.org   V. Compete through co-optation.
huffingtonpost.com   V. Compete through co-optation.
the new front page   V. Compete through co-optation.
L   et the telling fit the story.

                   Photo courtesy of the U.S. Army.
cnn.com   VI. Let the telling fit the story.
nytimes.com | theatlantic.com   VI. Let the telling fit the story.
talkingpointsmemo.com   VI. Let the telling fit the story
nytimes.com | texastribune.org   VI. Let the telling fit the story.
nytimes.com | texastribune.org   VI. Let the telling fit the story.
E   Xplain, explain, explain.
                Flickr photo courtesy of user Pip R. Lagenta.
“
“ When remotely possible,
turn news into explanation.
        source: Gawker founder/CEO Nick Denton
voices.washingtonpost.com/ezra-klein   VII. Explain, explain, explain.
voices.washingtonpost.com/ezra-klein   VII. Explain, explain, explain.
slate.com   VII. Explain, explain, explain.
C
Omments are content.
         Flickr photo courtesy of user nolifebeforecoffee.
ta-nehisicoates.theatlantic.com   VIII. Comments are content.
ta-nehisicoates.theatlantic.com   VIII. Comments are content.
content gets
  assigned
content gets
  curated
content gets
  edited
content gets
 promoted
ta-nehisicoates.theatlantic.com   VIII. Comments are content.
ta-nehisicoates.theatlantic.com   VIII. Comments are content.
metafilter.com   VIII. Comments are content.
I   Llustrate everything.
           Flickr photo courtesy of user movimente.
huffingtonpost.com   IX. Illustrate everything.
Jim wanted a
transportation
blog.
A transportation blog?!
*actual transportation blog headlines   IX. Illustrate everything.
“The word that came to mind was ‘brazen.’”

blogs.startribune.com/roadguy    IX. Illustrate everything.
images courtesy of roadguy   IX. Illustrate everything.
1.Photowalks
                2.Station image licenses
                3.Handout photography
                4.Creative Com...
D   On’t fear digression.
              Flickr photo courtesy of user simonsterg.
andrewsullivan.theatlantic.com   X. Don’t fear digression.
voices.washingtonpost.com/ezra-klein   X. Don’t fear digression.
digression adds
   character
digression adds
   catharsis
B   E a bit predictable.
            Flickr photo courtesy of user ahockley.
andrewsullivan.theatlantic.com   XI. Be a bit predictable.
dcist.com   XI. Be a bit predictable.
dcist.com   XI. Be a bit predictable.
ENGAGE.
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Usc Dark Arts

  1. 1. Dark secrets of the online overlords
  2. 2. very important things I won’t dwell on: • social media • partnerships & guest-blogging • technology • SEO • cat photos
  3. 3. what I will dwell on: sensibility & desire
  4. 4. P ackage, repackage, repeat. Flickr photo courtesy of user scmgee.
  5. 5. lifehacker.com I. Package, repackage, repeat
  6. 6. lifehacker.com I. Package, repackage, repeat
  7. 7. lifehacker.com I. Package, repackage, repeat
  8. 8. lifehacker.com I. Package, repackage, repeat
  9. 9. lifehacker.com I. Package, repackage, repeat
  10. 10. lifehacker.com I. Package, repackage, repeat
  11. 11. packaging reinforces
  12. 12. packaging extends reach
  13. 13. stock and flow
  14. 14. andrewsullivan.theatlantic.com I. Package, repackage, repeat.
  15. 15. thelede.blogs.nytimes.com I. Package, repackage, repeat.
  16. 16. texastribune.org I. Package, repackage, repeat.
  17. 17. mashable.com I. Package, repackage, repeat.
  18. 18. mashable.com I. Package, repackage, repeat.
  19. 19. mashable.com I. Package, repackage, repeat.
  20. 20. talkingpointsmemo.com I. Package, repackage, repeat.
  21. 21. S treams, not stories. Flickr photo courtesy of user Mr. T in DC.
  22. 22. city room and l.a.now II. Streams, not stories.
  23. 23. gothamist network II. Streams, not stories.
  24. 24. city room vs. gothamist II. Streams, not stories.
  25. 25. feed > post
  26. 26. subscriber > visitor
  27. 27. sfist.com II. Streams, not stories.
  28. 28. sfist.com II. Streams, not stories.
  29. 29. N Umbering is narrative. Flickr photo courtesy of user svenwerk.
  30. 30. popurls.com III. Numbering is narrative.
  31. 31. popurls.com III. Numbering is narrative.
  32. 32. soulofthecommunity.org III. Numbering is narrative.
  33. 33. soulofthecommunity.org III. Numbering is narrative.
  34. 34. theatlantic.com III. Numbering is narrative.
  35. 35. lists promise comprehensiveness
  36. 36. lists promise limits
  37. 37. lists promise hierarchy
  38. 38. lists promise authority
  39. 39. themoneymeltdown.com III. Numbering is narrative.
  40. 40. examples of guides from different sites III. Numbering is narrative.
  41. 41. H Eadlines are hooks. Flickr photo courtesy of user minifig.
  42. 42. “ Imagine you're writing a headline for a magazine (one with tight deadlines) rather than a newspaper. “ source: Gawker founder/CEO Nick Denton
  43. 43. Vs. wired.com vs. gawker.com IV. Headlines are hooks.
  44. 44. focus on implications, not events
  45. 45. nytimes.com vs. google news vs. gawker.com IV. Headlines are hooks
  46. 46. Vs. nytimes.com vs. google news vs. gawker.com IV. Headlines are hooks
  47. 47. Vs. Vs. nytimes.com vs. google news vs. gawker.com IV. Headlines are hooks
  48. 48. 1.Discover 2.Easy 3.Guarantee 4.Health 5.Love 6.Money 7.New 8.Proven 9.Results 10.Safety 11.Save 12.You 12 most profit-producing words IV. Headlines are hooks
  49. 49. 1.Top 2.Why 3.How 4.Will 5.Guide 6.Best 7.Secret 8.Ultimate 9.Your 10.Worst 11.New 12.Future 12 most arresting headline words IV. Headlines are hooks
  50. 50. C ompete through co-optation. Photo courtesy of the U.S. military.
  51. 51. andrewsullivan.theatlantic.com V. Compete through co-optation.
  52. 52. andrewsullivan.theatlantic.com V. Compete through co-optation.
  53. 53. npr.org V. Compete through co-optation.
  54. 54. huffingtonpost.com V. Compete through co-optation.
  55. 55. the new front page V. Compete through co-optation.
  56. 56. L et the telling fit the story. Photo courtesy of the U.S. Army.
  57. 57. cnn.com VI. Let the telling fit the story.
  58. 58. nytimes.com | theatlantic.com VI. Let the telling fit the story.
  59. 59. talkingpointsmemo.com VI. Let the telling fit the story
  60. 60. nytimes.com | texastribune.org VI. Let the telling fit the story.
  61. 61. nytimes.com | texastribune.org VI. Let the telling fit the story.
  62. 62. E Xplain, explain, explain. Flickr photo courtesy of user Pip R. Lagenta.
  63. 63. “ “ When remotely possible, turn news into explanation. source: Gawker founder/CEO Nick Denton
  64. 64. voices.washingtonpost.com/ezra-klein VII. Explain, explain, explain.
  65. 65. voices.washingtonpost.com/ezra-klein VII. Explain, explain, explain.
  66. 66. slate.com VII. Explain, explain, explain.
  67. 67. C Omments are content. Flickr photo courtesy of user nolifebeforecoffee.
  68. 68. ta-nehisicoates.theatlantic.com VIII. Comments are content.
  69. 69. ta-nehisicoates.theatlantic.com VIII. Comments are content.
  70. 70. content gets assigned
  71. 71. content gets curated
  72. 72. content gets edited
  73. 73. content gets promoted
  74. 74. ta-nehisicoates.theatlantic.com VIII. Comments are content.
  75. 75. ta-nehisicoates.theatlantic.com VIII. Comments are content.
  76. 76. metafilter.com VIII. Comments are content.
  77. 77. I Llustrate everything. Flickr photo courtesy of user movimente.
  78. 78. huffingtonpost.com IX. Illustrate everything.
  79. 79. Jim wanted a transportation blog.
  80. 80. A transportation blog?!
  81. 81. *actual transportation blog headlines IX. Illustrate everything.
  82. 82. “The word that came to mind was ‘brazen.’” blogs.startribune.com/roadguy IX. Illustrate everything.
  83. 83. images courtesy of roadguy IX. Illustrate everything.
  84. 84. 1.Photowalks 2.Station image licenses 3.Handout photography 4.Creative Commons (Flickr) 5.Crowd-contributed 6.iStockPhoto, WebShots, etc. 7.Wikipedia potential image sources IX. Illustrate everything.
  85. 85. D On’t fear digression. Flickr photo courtesy of user simonsterg.
  86. 86. andrewsullivan.theatlantic.com X. Don’t fear digression.
  87. 87. voices.washingtonpost.com/ezra-klein X. Don’t fear digression.
  88. 88. digression adds character
  89. 89. digression adds catharsis
  90. 90. B E a bit predictable. Flickr photo courtesy of user ahockley.
  91. 91. andrewsullivan.theatlantic.com XI. Be a bit predictable.
  92. 92. dcist.com XI. Be a bit predictable.
  93. 93. dcist.com XI. Be a bit predictable.
  94. 94. ENGAGE.
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