Rumor Has It That MSN’s Got Something New To Offer

12 Feb

As a teenager, I was addicted to using MSN messenger. Since I was late to getting Internet access, I didn’t have an AOL account. I only used MSN. And interesting, it hasn’t changed much since its creation. The only real news to me was that MSN and NBC News were splitting, thus dismantling MSN has a legitimate news outlet in most people’s book. However, MSN has taken initiative and started its own news branch, MSN News.

Besides its ties with Microsoft, MSN News has had little support since few people rely on it for their aggregated news source  In combating that issue, the department has focused on making the site more visually pleasing – by integrating Windows 8 features – and more scandalous. By “scandalous,” I mean that they added a “Rumors” section to their news website.

As simple as it sounds, the “Rumors” section announces unconfirmed and/or confirmed surprising facts about celebrities, politicians and national icons. The premise is to be the FIRST news source to break the news, thus channeling more traffic to the site. The use of trend analytic applications zone in on topics tweeted and searched for in search engines. It’s interesting, for sure, but I don’t see much merit in the idea.

Newspapers/trusted news sources do not rely on rumors to increase their business, which I believe added to the credibility of the source. MSN News now believes that having a “Rumors” section is justifiable and is giving viewers what they want to see. I mean, that’s true. I was very intrigued when I saw an orange-colored block filled with an ugly face made by Beyonce at the Super Bowl, but I still don’t think it’s admirable to promote such a lifestyle.

In conclusion, I was disappointed to see MSN focus on such a petty part of society that most deem superfluous and cheap. I’m interested in seeing where this trend leads this “news” source.

Author: Matt Mazick

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2 Responses to “Rumor Has It That MSN’s Got Something New To Offer”

  1. Joenumber February 12, 2013 at 9:46 pm #

    While I understand that adding a Rumors section to the website might give many journalists pause, I think it’s important to note that MSN isn’t presenting itself as a traditional news source boasting in-depth coverage. It’s meant for people to simply browse over and collect enough information to be able to talk at the water cooler (as one of the managers stated). Because MSN isn’t really competing with traditional media, I hesitate to hold their site up to the same standards as, say, CNN. I feel they are competing more with E!, next to which their scandalous sections seem tame.

    • mazickj2150 February 13, 2013 at 4:29 am #

      Joe, I like your straightforward approach. To a certain extent, I do agree with you, but I can’t help but think that MSN wants to be compared to a more credible source than E! News. Someone asked one of the managers what he thought were MSN’s competitors, and the answer wasn’t a more gossip-oriented news source. He emphasized the word “credible” a lot in his presentation.

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