Bonum Certa Men Certa

Your News is PR: The Economic Times Example

Dell articles
Who pays for articles you read in "official" sites and why?



Summary: IBM is buying the news, this time in India

The Economic Times publishes a lot of Microsoft PR and earlier this week we caught it publishing a "sponsored story" for IBM. Yes, it even says that it's a "sponsored story", so there is no question about it. Is this the future of journalism? Even in the Economic Times, which is considered a mainstream publication and "official" source? What is the role of journalists then? Are they becoming just another tier in PR operations, like Microsoft's Peter Galli for instance? It seems like Dell has begun something similar with journalists (see screenshot above with former Noveller Zonker).



Either way, see for yourselves one paragraph which IBM paid for. To the authors' credit (probably IBM), at least they are honest about it over at the Economic Times. Some others would probably omit the evidence of sellout altogether:

Not only IBM, but there are other companies too that provide collaborative tools. Novell GroupWise gives a wide range of collaborative tools to create a "plugged in" work environment. Novell Pulse enables real-time communication, authoring and social messaging for the enterprise. Microsoft offers Live and NetMeeting. But IBM’s Sametime is a class apart.


Says who? IBM? The Economic Times? It doesn't matter. It's all just PR masquerading as journalism [1, 2], even in a major paper.

“[A]fter analysing a five-day working week in the media, across 10 hard-copy papers, ACIJ and Crikey found that nearly 55% of stories analysed were driven by some form of public relations. The Daily Telegraph came out on top of the league ladder with 70% of stories analysed triggered by public relations. The Sydney Morning Herald gets the wooden spoon with (only) 42% PR-driven stories for that week.”

--"Over half your news is spin"



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