Monetizing Traffic or Content?

Very good piece over at The Atlantic by Alexis C. Madrigal on the kids behind Twitter phenom @HistoryInPics – and why it, like a few other similar endeavors, are basically stealing other people’s work for profit.

The audiences that Di Petta and Cameron have built are created with the work of photographers who they don’t pay or even credit. They don’t provide sources for the photographs or the captions that accompany them. Sometimes they get stuff wrong and/or post copyrighted photographs.

They are playing by rules that “old media” and most new media do not. To one way of thinking, they are cheating at the media game, and that’s why they’re winning. (Which they are.)

So, take a look at your RSS or Twitter feed – if you live off of what you create, should you be supporting sites that steal from your peers?

Mark E. Johnson

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