Daily Thoughts: False Advertising — Nothing to Do With ANYthing!

in R2cornell3 months ago

As I read some of my morning email and visited a few favorite web sites earlier today, I found myself thinking about how we often protest and criticize "fake news" but people don't talk nearly as much about something else that affects most of us:

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Fake Advertising

You know how you'll read an article on a web site, and there'll be all these other links to "stories" in the sidebar, or down at the bottom?

Of course, the vast majority of them are not "stories" at ALL, they are just thinly disguised advertising.

That's not a huge problem, by itself... after a while you get used to the idea that most of them are ads, not content.

The thing that really bothers me is the frequency with which the so-called "teaser story" and images designed to make us visit some site has absolutely nothing to do with what is on the other end of the link.

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This morning, I saw something that looked like a story about some really beautiful looking (based on the images!) "tiny houses" in my local area, and so I (like the gullible fool that I am!) clicked on that... and ended up in some ugly rat's nest of a web site loudly proclaiming that they could teach me how to become RICH by flipping houses with no investment and no money down.

Absolutely nothing there about Tiny Houses. Not even the enticing photo that drew me in could be found on the web site!

Pretty misleading, if you ask me.

Of course what makes it worse is that the garbage at the end of the link was just another level of deception because the so-called "workshop" offered (for $895 for a weekend) will actually teach you nothing viable whatsoever, and only serves as a way to fleece the gullible and greedy of $895, NOT to teach anything meaningful that might allow someone to make even a modest income buying and selling houses.

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Caveat Emptor...

"Buyer Beware" the old saying goes...

Of course, many will argue that it's "a free country" and that we live in a "Buyer Beware" world... but my morning musings sort of led to the deeper question of why do we even ACCEPT this sort of thing as "normal and inevitable," as opposed to "being outraged" by these thinly disguised forms of thievery?

Why do we tolerate deception as something pretty normal and even acceptable, rather than as something sketchy and undesirable?

I do recognize that some of it might be cultural, too... there are cultures in which "Cheat if you can get away with it" is not only acceptable, but even carries a positive connotation, implying that the person in question should be looked up to as clever.

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Be that as it may, how can we ever hope to build a better world as long as deception so often is the cornerstone of interaction?

Then again... maybe there IS no such thing as a "better world..."

Thanks for reading!

How about YOU? Do you ever fall for those "interesting stories" in the sidebar of web sites? How often do you feel disappointed and deceived? Are you OK with that, or does it annoy you? Comments, feedback and other interaction is invited and welcomed! Because — after all — SOCIAL content is about interacting, right? Leave a comment-- share your experiences-- be part of the conversation!

(As usual, all text and images by the author, unless otherwise credited. This is ORIGINAL CONTENT, created expressly for this platform — NOT A CROSSPOST!!!)
Created at 20200709 16:06 PDT
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Hi @denmarkguy, can understand your frustration, I have had the same but it was even more annoying because the "article was split into paragraph and you could read only one paragraph each time you have to click on the button "next" to go to next paragraph of the article and so I spent about 30 min but at the end it was nothing related to the topic of an article. From now on I stopped doing that, it is deception and wasting time of user.

Ah yes, I know those well @stef1, and they are also extremely frustrating... and typically swimming in advertising, and the entire purpose of them is not even to be an article, but to sell as much advertising as possible. After all, if you make it to the end of the so-called "article" it means you will account for 50 "page impressions."

It seems like everything has become "commerce first," and "real purpose" second... or maybe the sour truth is that the purpose is commerce, and nothing else...

You're so right my friend, we live in an age of deception. I've just passed the age of a half century myself and I can vividly remember a time when news, advertisements and entertainment were separate things; now it's all infotainment and infomercials... Those are actual words now! It's not myself or boomers I'm worried about in this respect; there are generations that know nothing else and I've no idea what this will do to them...

Anyhow, thanks for this wonderful article! 🙏🏼

Thanks for stopping by, and for your kind words!

The whole notion of "if it BLEEDS, it LEADS" in the news media is pretty old, but now we are artificially manufacturing blood and unrest simply for the purpose of gaining ratings and selling something.

Every time I come across yet another insane idea portrayed as "newsy," I can't help but have scenes from the movio "Idiocracy" playing in the back of my mind...

I've clicked on that very same tiny house link!!! I don't click on any of them any more. I don't have time to waste like that.

All of news is false advertising if you ask me, and right now it's false advertising for political candidates.

I suppose I just find it alarming that nothing seems to be able to stand on its own merit anymore... it's all so inflated, shade, misrepresented, overblown and sketchy...

Maybe I'm just getting old... and my values are no longer "of this age," as I sometimes thought of my parents, many moons ago.

Oh boy have values changed! I argue "values" with my two highly educated daughters all the time, who were taught all kinds of stuff we could never imagine. Classifications of right and wrong have been turned topsy turvy, and follow ideological political lines. Here, I wrote this about it, a very short and hopefully amusing story that is largely true.
https://steempeak.com/hive-114105/@owasco/we-are-young-a-freewrite

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