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Is AOL's Patch the new (Evil) Kid on Your Block?

information about AOLs latest attempt at local ad revenues.

     

lexipixel

7:11 am on Nov 12, 2010 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member




AOL’s Armstrong answers question, ‘Is Patch evil?’
On stage at the Online News Association’s annual conference here in DC, AOL chief Tim Armstrong (left) was winding down the keynote session with NPR’s Vivian Schiller. That’s when USC’s Robert Hernandez (right) walked up the microphone and dropped the question that some in the audience wanted to ask, “Is Patch evil?”

[lostremote.com...]


For those who haven't heard, AOL bought something called "patch" and is pouring $50M into it to break into the local content website business and attempt to kill off local newspaper websites, community websites, blogs and anything else that competes for local ad revenue.

rogerd

3:48 pm on Nov 16, 2010 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Administrator rogerd is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



Hasn't Topix been attacking the same market for years?

This effort sounds like a more serious attempt to build quality content vs. syndicated stuff and UGC.

lexipixel

7:07 pm on Nov 19, 2010 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



This effort sounds like a more serious attempt to build quality content vs. syndicated stuff and UGC.


Visit one of the Patch sites. At the bottom of every page they are asking the general public to "volunteer" and "contribute" -- never mentioning AOL anywhere on the site and trying to fool people into thinking it's a "local website".

Their Terms of Use is the greediest I've seen. They make Facebook look good in terms of what they can do with your content without your permission -- and weaved in a clause allowing them to go and find public data about you and co-mingle it with your "contributions";

“…you hereby grant Patch a perpetual license to use, redact, republish, copy, perform and distribute your Content and screen name, including any intellectual property contained therein, in any medium now known or hereinafter developed without payment or compensation to you and without seeking any further approval from you. We may further use your name, likeness, publicly accessible biographical data and any other information in connection with such use of the Content. You acknowledge that our use of your Content may include licensing such Content to third parties and/or using such Content for advertising purposes. In no event shall we be required to seek your approval or provide you with any compensation in connection with such uses…”

...yeah, that makes me want to contribute to AOL.

They are running the same "community leader" program -- a "work for no pay deal" that they got sued for and lost.

My biggest issue with them is that all their marketing, "About Us", terms, privacy policy etc are complete lies -- AOL is a company that counts on people being stupid -- and with a track record of abusing customers, employees and investors I see them as pariah in the online community.

lexipixel

2:06 am on Nov 20, 2010 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



Hasn't Topix been attacking the same market for years?


Topix is an aggregator -- with too many pop-unders, modal pop-ups and more diet ads and other shady ad types and categories than most. I wonder if they still run the Whack-a-mole 468x60's. The few times I've mistakenly clicked a Topix link, I've backed out -- it has a Geocities virus-payload-site feel.
 

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