#ICYMI: Monkey Selfies, Dangerous Jargon, & Facebook’s Attack on Clickbait

Feast your eyes on another installment of In Case You Missed It (#ICYMI), MarketSmiths’ roundup of recent content on copywriting, culture, and anything else we’re dying to share.

► When we tell folks at cocktail parties that we’re copywriters, half of them think we’re in copyright law. This might only add to the confusion, but it’s too awesome too ignore: the US Copyright Office clarified that it doesn’t protect animal authors after a monkey’s selfie went viral. The wildlife photographer who let the primate play with his camera asked Wikipedia to remove the selfie—Wikipedia refused.

► We’ve always stood against dull jargon. Seems like more people are joining our ranks in the war against bland. Check out this writer’s piece in The New York Times on getting out of the jargon trap.

► Clickbait is a term for eye-catching yet misleading headlines that link to vapid stories—BuzzFeed is famous for it, Upworthy aims to use it for good, while ClickHole is the Onion’s uproarious send-up of clickbait content.

Believe it or not, Facebook is taking action to filter out the clickbait by measuring how long users stay on the links. Clicks followed by quick closes won’t count for much. Hopefully this fuels more content that’s just as engaging as its headline.

► Ready to get meta? Check out this clickbait headline for John Oliver’s already-viral video mocking clickbait headlines about John Oliver (“What happens at the 2-minute mark of this video will AMAZE you!”).

Stayed tuned for the next edition of #ICYMI! 

 

A winsome wordsmith, Gregory M. Lewis loves nothing better than absorbing new information and crystallizing it into clear, captivating copy. Greg brings his incisive insight and easy-going approach to every project. In his free time, the Chicago native can be spotted at Nets games, art galleries, and local concerts in Brooklyn.

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