Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Fool Me Once, Shame on Me, Fool Me Twice Shame on You

By Emily Koudelka

The saying goes, "Fool me once, shame on me. Fool me twice, shame on you." But when it comes to the world of journalism, should the trickery even enter the public's realm of clickage.

In today's day and age, it appears that there arises more headlines solely intended to infuriate and "trick" readers into sharing, thereby, increasing the engagement for the writer and their platform. 

As Kira Goldenberg states in her article, previously writers used to leave gaps in their headlines in hopes to peak the readers curiosity in order to entice them to read.  Yet, now writers resort to the emotion of anger to spark the reader's curiosity.  

After taken by anger sparked by reading of the headline, the reader is more likely to share the article out of fury even without taking the proper time to read it and thereby spreading the "trickery." Paul Henson, with ABC news, advises in his article that the best way to beat the trend remains as simple as it seems. He simply states to avoid the spreading of these anger enticing false articles, the reader should simply fully read the article before impulsively sharing it. 

This boils down simply to the old adage our parents probably told us waving their finger, "You can't always believe what you read."  While the adage has always been true,  it needs to be heeded even more in today's realm of tricking headlines.  Henson goes on to advise that if after reading, the reader is still unsure about the article's level of truth, then they should google it.  Journalists, while need to stop the trolling headlines,  do not show any sign of stopping, so it now lies in the hands of the readers to stop the sharing and spreading of the falsity. 

You may be confused as to why journalist's would stoop to such hoaxes as headlines, when we vow to be transparent and always want to write the up most quality and truth.  The answer is quite simple though.  Writers and publications base their success of engagement in the digital world, this means the amount of time a reader spends on an article and the amount of shares an article receives. 

Courtesy of GoBanana's : Creating Engaging Headlines

Writers assume to do so they need to create alluring headlines.  In an article written by Kenny Goodman, about creating the best headlines he even states as a tip to "use the emotional hot-button of pain."  He encourages future headline readers to take something that could potential arouse the pain emotion for the reader and utilize in the headline, in order to entice the reader in to engaging and sharing. 

The trend of using anger and strong emotion to reel readers drives the engagement for these publications. Due to this, the sharing of "13 Ways to Make Your Crush Love You," or "22 Things Your Boyfriends Does He Never Wants You to Find Out About," probably will not be ending soon So it is our job as readers to stop the spreading of the trolling headlines. 

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