March 1st, 2015
(written by lawrence krubner, however indented passages are often quotes). You can contact lawrence at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Where the Buzzfeed crew distinguish themselves from older media organizations, and even many of their contemporary online competitors, is in their lack of quality control, which borders on an actual rejection of the notion that “quality” ought to be an important factor in determining whether or not to publish something.
That’s Buzzfeed’s crucial differentiating factor. Combine it with their killer CMS (which encourages the rapid creation of exactly the sort of content we imagine when we think of lazy Buzzfeed content), sprinkle huge sacks of money on top, and you have the Buzzfeed secret sauce. The “craft” that they “honed” was, basically, having enough money to pay enough people to throw an infinite amount of shit at the wall (the wall being the internet), secure in the knowledge that some of it will stick and whatever doesn’t won’t harm the Buzzfeed brand, because “there is a ton of shit on this website” is a central part of the Buzzfeed brand.
So, yes, they were definitely perfectly positioned to capture the dress thing last night, because they have a massive staff (in addition to their horde of unpaid “community” contributors) that could produce a metric ton of (not exclusively lazy and bad, I’ll grant) content about a thing that went viral at a time when most New York-based Internet media organizations were either dark for the night or being maintained by a tiny overnight staff. And they didn’t have to worry, as almost all other professional media organizations that aren’t shady social spam shops do, about having editors or contributors try to maintain a certain standard of quality in all of the publication’s work on the subject. That really speeds up the content production process!