ZDNet's Take on "Fear Mongering": what do you think?

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Check out ZDNet's latest take on fear mongering web sites and publications. The articles mentions Y2kNewsWire.

"Most of the messages came from y2knewswire, a site that promotes its outlandish interpretations of events with press releases distributed on the major news wires."

article URL: http://www.zdnet.com/zdy2k/1998/12/5374.html

I myself subscribe to y2knewswire. I like y2knewswire. Now I am puzzled. Should I believe ZDNet or should I believe Y2KNewsWire?

What do you all think of this? Opinions? Comments?

Bobbi ----<-----<<<-------<@----------@>-------->>>------>------ New!!! PowerPoint slide show -- "Y2k: Where are we now? Where are we going?" Check it out at http://www.buzzbyte.com/ ----<-----<<<-------<@----------@>-------->>>------>------

-- Bobbi (bobbia@slic.com), December 18, 1998


uh, Bobbi, zdnet's leadership have been DWGI from the word go...I think the concept that their entire industry could vanish simply terrifies them.

Arlin Adams

-- Arlin H. Adams (ahadams@ix.netcom.com), December 18, 1998.

I do find Y2Knewswire to be pretty opinionated and they are selling their $195 'survival guide', however, at this point I feel some shouting is needed.

On the other hand, I think Ziff-Davis (ZD) has an large advertising empire to protect.

So who has the most money at stake in this - a business selling a few $195 guides with a very limited market or an advertising giant responible for promoting the sale of millions of dollars of product annually?

I'm not suggesting that ZD is deliberately distorting the truth but rather that they are being highly selective. Remember that, first and foremost, they are a business. Spreading news which would adversely affect their customer base is not in their own best interest. In otherwords, I would not look to ZD for any kind of leadership on a problem that has clearly evolved beyond the limited scope of those they serve (i.e. the companies who buy their advertising).

This is not to fault ZD, it is simply who they are. ZD is clearly not a news reporting organization but rather a business whose primary function is to deliver highly effective advertising to the people most likely to purchase their clients' widgits. This is their business model. It's how they make their money. Any 'news' articles are simply ancillary to their primary function. In short, it is clearly not ZD's obligation or responsibility to provide highly informative, unbiased reporting on Y2K.

This is another reason why it is critically important to get your Y2K news from hundreds of sources. Then the patterns clearly emerge and you can begin to see Y2K from the 90,000-foot view.

And that view is more than a little disturbing.


-- Arnie Rimmer (arnie_rimmer@usa.net), December 18, 1998.

I was kind of "tongue-in-cheeking" it here a bit. Sorry 'bout that. I actually trust Y2KNewsWire, but am disappointed in ZDNet's take on the whole issue. :-) Now I am gonna try to get this sigthing right!



New!!! PowerPoint slide show -- "Y2k: Where are we now? Where are we going?"

Check it out at Buzzbyte.com


-- Bobbi (bobbia@slic.com), December 18, 1998.

also read Aaron Goldberg's character assassination of Y2K pessimists at:


I encourage e-mails to the author.

-- Ed Angrier (read@this.now), December 18, 1998.

Arnie, I think you are just so right on there. If I can expand on your theme a wee bit for the uninitiated...

I believe that in order to properly understand and/or criticize media reporting, one needs to understand who "The Customer" is and what "The Product" is. This applies to all newspapers, magazines, TV networks, etc. that rely on advertising. Very simply, "The Customer" is the advertiser and "The Product" is you, the demographic and number of "media consumers" that the advertiser is paying to reach.

When you go to a newsstand and purchase a copy of a magazine, (PC Week for example. A Ziff-Davis "property") that adds another number to the circulation. These numbers are independantly verified and this is what media companies use to charge for advertising. Most likely, you are buying that magazine because you fit into the general demographic of people that advertisers in that magazine are trying to reach. You have just become "The Product" that "The Customer" pays to reach. It's all about your eyeballs.

I know that's a simplistic explanation, but it's amazing how many people don't understand this concept. It might help to make sense of why, as Arnie suggested, they are concerned about protecting their advertising empires...

-- pshannon (pshannon@inch.com), December 18, 1998.


I also think y2knewswire is reading this site. I've noticed that certain links to interesting info get posted here then some of it is covered in their next few e-mails. Or maybe we're all reading the same stuff and similar sites.

What a sorting and sifting job it all is!


-- Diane J. Squire (sacredspaces@yahoo.com), December 18, 1998.

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