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April 15, 2006

Topless Jessica Alba

Attentive Flea-readers will have noticed the Google ads on the side-bar. It will be no surprise to most to learn the majority of search results arriving at the Flea do so via Google's search engine. I draw the line at writing headlines for the benefit of bots. Such is the difference between writng a blog and publishing a newspaper.

Whether search engines will influence journalism below the headline is uncertain. The natural-language processing algorithms, search experts say, scan the title, headline and at least the first hundred words or so of news articles.

Journalists, they say, would be wise to do a little keyword research to determine the two or three most-searched words that relate to their subject--and then include them in the first few sentences. "That's not something they teach in journalism schools," said Danny Sullivan, editor of SearchEngineWatch, an online newsletter. "But in the future, they should."

Having taught aspiring journalists these last few years I can think of a long list of things not taught in journalism schools. Sullivan's observation was in my top ten.

Posted by Ghost of a flea at April 15, 2006 08:14 AM

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