Content-type: text/html Downes.ca ~ Stephen's Web ~ We Need Your Email Address

Stephen Downes

Knowledge, Learning, Community

404 Media is requiring people submit their email address in order to read their articles. In this article they explain why. They want to make the site easy to view to encourage readers to sign up for subscription content, but for this to work people have to actually view the content. Their main concern is that their site is being scraped by AI engines that then rewrite the articles and publish them, using serach engine optimization (SEO) to divert viewers from the original to the clone. It doesn't help that advertisers, citing 'brand safety' concerns, don't want to support actual journalism. Nor does the fact that social media platform algorithms favour clickbait-style engagement, and have in any case become cesspools. My problem is that I don't link to articles that require email subscriptions to view. Open online learning is no doubt facing the same issues (albeit more quietly).

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Stephen Downes Stephen Downes, Casselman, Canada
stephen@downes.ca

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Last Updated: May 18, 2024 7:01 p.m.

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