RIABiz: Barron’s Next misses the mark with its content
Janice Kirkel of RIABiz.com is critical of Dow Jones & Co. for the launch of the new Barron’s Next site aimed at millennial readers.
Kirkel writes, “Barron’s Next, along with almost every other news source in the country, finds itself weighing the journalistic compromises that come with the mandate to ‘satisfy millennials’ need to get information lighting-fast, [with] stories can be read in one minute,’ as Finn wrote in his letter to Barron’s readers.
“To that end, Next features articles like ‘How to Invest in Your 20s,’ ‘This Trick Lets You Live (Nearly) Rent Free,’ ‘The $450 Credit Card: A Surprisingly Good Deal,’ ‘Here’s How Americans Spend $8.4 billion on Halloween,’ ‘College Debt Forgiveness? It’s Already Here!’ and ‘Do Millennials Really Hate Diamonds?’ The articles are accompanied by stock photos of perky young things in cheerful attire in outdoorsy settings.
“Next is sponsored by Fidelity Investments. On the homepage, a Fidelity advertisement with the headline ‘Investing doesn’t get any better than this’ is topped by the words: ‘sponsored content.’ Taking up other homepage real estate are brand names logos, such as Tesla and Kate Spade, clickable links that lead to bylined text with the same apparent typeface and format as the articles.
“Dow Jones corporate communications in New York, Barron’s parent corporation, did not respond to two emails seeking comment on the format of Barron’s Next, and whether or not it considers any or all of its content sponsored. Fidelity also declined to comment. Neither did Finn or Jack Otter, editor of Barron’s Next.”
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