As of the writing of this post, the Westboro story published by The Huffington Post on the 21st of May (I will not provide a link and if you keep reading you’ll see why) has accumulated 7,159 shares to Facebook. Understanding that my own blog will have between 25-30% more impressions than shares per post let’s round up and say that this particular HuffPost piece may have had about 10,000 impressions (the math will be easier that way). And let’s suppose that the CPM advertising rate for the Huffpost is $12 (at the Atlanta Journal Constittion the rate is between $8 and $16). On that post there are three ad slots (not including the three “sponsored links” that are also revenue generators). So lets do a little math (now I am a writer so I need a spotter on this one).
If three advertisers are paying $12 per thousand that is $360 for the three ads (not including the sponsored links). But let’s go a little deeper. I reloaded the page 5 times and was shown different ads in all three slots each time. That is 15 advertisers. If all 15 pay the same rate (which they likely do not) then that post may have generated around $1,800. Oh, and online advertising is way more complicated but for the sake of all our sanity stick with me.
Ok, so even if I’ve oversimplified the online ad process and my numbers are off I think you see why I am assaulting you in this way.
When we click on a headline about Westboro and their sick brand of crazy hate; when we share on Facebook a post about Phelps and his nasty band of provokers; when we like or comment on a FB post about another ass-hat stunt or stomach churning statement from this toxic clan – we are making money for the media outlets who peddle this fear and loathing for a profit.
So I am asking, pleading in fact, for you to help with a media blackout of all things Westboro. Don’t click through, don’t share, don’t like or comment (even if you are calling out the sin of WBC). If we stop making these posts profitable maybe, just maybe folks like HuffPost and The Times will lose interest in a story that is not making them money. And maybe, just maybe if the spotlight dims on the f’d up behavior of the seething hatred of the heretics of WBC they will begin to lose interest in their blasphemous shenanigans.
This time, all you have to do to make a difference is, well nothing.