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Pitch (v.) – to throw out

Pitch (v.) – to throw out published on No Comments on Pitch (v.) – to throw out

Oh, pitches. You get so many as a blogger, yet it’s been so long since I’ve had a good one. And these days it’s rarely even “Here’s an interesting angle on a cool topic”; instead, the pitch is “Post my content” or “Post a link to my content.”

And the stuff is consistently awful content-farmed dreck, created purely to generate leads or sway search engine algorithms—with exactly the amount of heart and soul that implies.

Sometimes it’s a guest post they want me to run, with a few keywords including a link to some site they’re promoting. (“We have posts on a wide range of topics,” they’ll sometimes say. If I want to feel good about humanity, I’ll sometimes pretend that’s their way of apologizing for not researching what my site is actually about.)

Lately the MacGuffin of choice is an infographic, one they’re just so sure my readers will find fascinating. True, I don’t blog about student debt financing and probably never will, but they assure me you’ll be riveted by their collage of stats, charts and stock illustrations.

The high-water mark for pitches so far was one that came to me in my capacity as The NOW Group’s Director of Integrated Communications. “As a Director of Integr, we’re sure you’ll be interested,” the email gushed. Apparently the spammer’s database allocated only a miserly 18 characters to the field “sucker’s job title”.

(Let me make something clear. I take integr very, very seriously. I studied in the School of Integr at Carleton Univer, and being Director of Integr is the fulfilment of a lifelong dr. So kindly don’t use it with such casual disregard, please and thank-you.)

Here’s the sad truth. Unless it’s directly related to the stuff I write about, and unless it’s really useful to the folks who read my blog, I am never going to link to your infographic. Never.

And in response to the spammers’ “Why not share this with your readers?” I offer the same answer Arthur Dent once did: because I want to keep them.

Infographobia

Infographobia published on No Comments on Infographobia

Adding a word like “infographic” to a spell check dictionary is the sort of unpleasant task that, like butchering animals, should probably be done out of sight of the end user.

I’m not sure why I’ve grown to dislike infographics so much. As a visual guy (hence the cartoons, right?) I wholeheartedly endorse graphic communication. But like so many other things, infographics are often conscripted into the ongoing War Against Informed Decision-Making. Not all of them: just the ones that are all graphic and no info (if that), or that use wild, unsourced statistics to back up an untenable position (which just so happens to support the need for the publisher’s product, service or policy prescription).

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I haven’t drawn fan art since high school (gads – more than thirty years), but there’s something irresistible about Noelle Stevenson‘s Nimona. So in response to Tuesday’s rampaging hellbeast triggering “LOCKDOWN INITIATED IN LEVELS B1 – B3,” here’s my take on how that’s going over one floor up:

level-b4

When’s the last time you doodled something fan-art-like? Was it a Snoopy? A Lisa Simpson? An X-wing fighter?

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