Business Insider’s business plan for growth
Ryan McCarthy writes for Reuters.com about Business Insider’s strategy in the wake of its announcement Thursday that it had secured $7 million in additional funding.
McCarthy writes, “None of this is intended to say Business Insider doesn’t do some very smart web journalism. Joe Weisenthal, in particular, appears to work inhuman hours and is one of the smartest and most prolific voices in business journalism. Joe’s crafted the site’s voice after his own. He regularly posts Wall Street analyst reports that others don’t get, and he’s able to provide the kind of quick context that works really well for Blodget’s readership. Blodget, for his part, can be a great blogger and has a particular knack for analyzing failures.
“So why does Business Insider risk undermining all that highly original, distinctive content for what appear to be roughly 18,000 article views? When media companies are asked to grow at a meteoric pace — and Comscore indicates that Business Insider’s unique visitors have nearly doubled this year — the line between original content and borderline theft gets awful blurry. The editorial mission quickly transforms from ‘What can I link to?’ to ‘How much can I take?’
“To be fair, Business Insider’s more prominent pieces are often its most original. But journalists and readers should be very worried when fast-growth media companies determine the standards for distinguishing between citation and theft.
“One one would hope readers and advertisers would eventually catch on to the kind of lazy lifting that would earn middle school students an F. But that hasn’t happened yet.”
Read more here.