Content Aware media news: August 10, 2023

Published: 11 August 2023

mowing a field, soviet propaganda style

Content Aware this week: Bad SEO worse than no SEO, Google's position on AI content crawling revealed, and how to block OpenAI.

Tales from the SEO shark tank
SEO is a field unfortunately occupied by its share of get-rich-quick merchants, modern day internet alchemists who promise to spin old, grey content into solid search engine visibility gold. This company found out the hard way that some are only really interested in converting your cash into their cash. All we can say is caveat emptor.

Content conflict: Canada
Following Meta's decision to cut Canadian news content from Facebook in the face of a law, yet to be passed, demanding payment for it, Canadian publishers are taking up the legal cudgels.

Corbidge comments on... time to block the AI content harvest?
OpenAI has now specified how to block GPTBot from crawling your content. Are publishers just making themselves hostage to legal fortune if they don't use the option?

Google: "Copyright should not apply to AI scraping"
It's official-ish: Google thinks copyright laws shouldn't apply to AI scrapers. A submission to the Australian government shows the ads-and-search firm thinks "that copyright law should be altered to allow for generative AI systems to scrape the internet". It does mention an opt-out. In disapproving terms.

Frequently Axed Questions
Google has essentially killed off the FAQ search result feature, allowing only "well-known, authoritative government and health websites" to have them surfaced. Were you one of innumerable publishers that spent time and effort to appear in the FAQ feature? Tough luck says one of the firm's big names. Oh, and How-To results are now limited to desktop only.

Clear thinking for newsrooms
Partnership on AI have produced a useful ten step guide for publishers looking to engage the positive aspects of generative AI into their operations. Without hype, it outlines how to identify where such technology could fit into a real world workflow.

CNET's housekeeping: gaming Google?
Deleting or archiving content can be a thing to do, for sure, in some circumstances. CNET seems to be being more radical.

Cost benefit analysis of local news
Decimation of local news systems on the back of digital advertising market distortions is just a fact. Yet, a healthy local news network can save society money. Actual money. Everyone.

They can hear what you type
Putting a muffler on your keyboard might need to be the latest anti-hacker measure, as a deep learning model is able to identify specific keyboard strokes using a microphone with 95 per cent accuracy.

Captcha, decoded?
In another security development that makes us want to book a spear-making course, bots are getting better than people in passing Captcha tests.