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Skim This and Skip That: ‘Daily Beast’ Tries to Build a Better Mousetrap, Fails

10.06.08 by Matty | 9 Comments | Digg This

First of all it’s been about 45 seconds since I’ve clicked the damn thing and I still I haven’t read a word of it because the site is too slow to load. And they don’t have an RSS feed that’s available on googlereader. That’s enough for me to not care.

Daily Beast peddles web-based news and commentary as if it’s something new (read: Huffpo) It doesn’t do anything any better than its competitors, it just packages it more nicely and markets it better. It’s not like Newsgroper or something that has a specific gimmick that hopefully people will enjoy. It has some meta-media critique and a lot of inside baseball about “big names” that most people have never heard, myself included. Shit, I had to wikipedia founders Barry Diller and Tina Brown. An article Wired article notes that they’re likely to hemorrhage cash because they have no income, and Tina has a history of money-losing ventures, but she says Uncle Barry has deep pockets.

Their tag line Read This, Not That” implies that they’re the ones telling you what to read and you should listen to them . And that irritating little caption has all of the smugness of NYT’s “All the news that fit not to print,” but little of the content to back it up.

The fact that there are no ads is nothing new, they don’t have a demographic or an established readership, so they couldn’t sell ad space for much anyway. I give them three months, six tops, to establish a core readership, some baseline traffic numbers, and something else they can show to advertisers because there’s no other way to monetize it. While they’re doing that, though, they’ll be hungry for PR and are likely to write some outlandish pieces in the hopes of getting links and sparking blog commentary. . . Aw, fuck!

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« At Your Feet: Still Recovering From a Freelance Weekend of Blown Deadlines and Puzzling ‘Mad Men’ Episodes
» Palin’s Political Aspiration Doodles on the Back of Her Trapper Keeper: We Read The Subtext So You Don’t Have To!