Here are some quick takes on a few items I’ve come across in the news the last few days:

(1) The average online news story receives half of its page views within the first 36 hours of being posted, according to a new study by the University of Notre Dame. I think this short lifespan is a result of many stories being disposable by nature – they simply aren’t relevant after the first day or two. I think it also has a bit to do with the nature of newspaper websites, which rarely organize archived content in a logical way (using tagging as an example) and have atrocious search engines that make it impossible to easily find old content.

(2) There is a shortage of quality venues on which to advertise online, according to a report McKinsey & Company. Rough Type has a good summary of the report. The results of this study jibes completely with what I’ve found working on advertising plans. Lots of growing sites attracting a lot of page views (like MySpace as an example) simply aren’t a good advertising fit for many clients. And much of the space that is available on high quality sites is junk. Do people really think that a 120*90 banner ad buried at the bottom of the homepage of a site like the New York Times is worth the effort and money?

(3) Political consulting rock stars Joe Lockhat, Carter Eskew, Mathew Dowd and Mark McKinnon are developing a new, bi-partisan social networking site called The idea here is to improve the political discourse online by providing a venue where rationale folks can have reasoned, less charged discussions about the issues of the day. Sounds great in theory, but it’s not going to work. Why? First, I have no idea how they plan on keeping the partisan flame throwers out of the mix. Seems impossible. These folks are committed. Second, if they do keep the partisans out, isn’t the site going to be dreadfully boring to most people? Seems to me that Americans have pretty much spoken on this issue and, for better of worse, they like their political sites partisan and highly charged. Kung Fu Quip has a good breakdown on the problems with this concept.

About the Author
Todd Zeigler
Todd Zeigler serves as the Brick Factory’s chief strategist and oversees the operations of the firm. In his sixteen year career in digital, he has planned and implemented campaigns for clients including the Pickens Plan, International Youth Foundation, Panthera, Edison Electric Institute, and the American Chemistry Council. Todd develops ambitious online advocacy programs, manages crises, implements online marketing strategies, and develops custom applications and software. He is bad at golf though.