Is @savedyouaclick snobbish about media? Yes

See, I saved you a click in the headline.

I’ve always been aggravated by the @savedyouaclick Twitter account. Expectation gap headlines can certainly be annoying, and oh boy did they rule Facebook for six months a while back. But headlines are about getting your stories read online. And writing headlines that invite a click are the point of that.

Out of context, the amazing pun-laden headlines that people love in print simply don’t work online – not from a search point of view, not from an audience point of view, and ultimately, since their work doesn’t get found or read, not from the journalist’s point of view.

@Savedyouaclick has always, to me, had a snobbishness about it. That “new” media outlets like Buzzfeed aren’t part of the club. That anything that isn’t po-faced and serious doesn’t deserve to be covered. Personally, I think it is symptomatic of the kind of attitude of sneering at what works online rather than learning from it that is currently tanking traditional news brands online.

And this is the tweet that prompted this post.


I mean, you know, in the last couple of days Buzzfeed produced a brilliant long read about Paul Elam, MRA leader in the US. And back in November they did this astonishing read about growing up as a teenage girl with a step-dad who was a peeping tom. They’ve hired an investigative journalism team.


For me the @SavedYouAClick attitude is like pretending that newspapers and TV never did “And finally…” stories. Or had cartoons. Or crosswords. Or horoscopes. Or any of the weird bits that are now considered to make up a “legitimate” news bundle. That nobody new can enter the hallowed traditionally respected media circle. That doing it the old way with the old brands is always what users are going to want.