While The Associated Press announced its plans to use robots to create financial press releases today, PR Newswire went in the (sort of) opposite direction last week with a new regulatory crackdown on spam. We missed it at the time, but now we’re on the case.
This move is interesting in that it won’t be based on algorithms alone: instead, the organization reports that its own editorial staffers will review submitted releases to make sure they deliver real value to readers via “a number of message elements” like original research and substantial analysis.
In other words, no more link-farming or jargon dumps/SEO tricks–in theory, at least…
The goal of this change is to help prevent clients from falling into the trap Google set with Panda 4.0 and contribute to the greater good by using internal data and old-fashioned elbow grease to get rid of releases that bring no real value to anyone (except a client with a single-minded focus on search rankings).
We applaud the org’s efforts to cut down on lazy content, and we’re very curious to see how the human touch will help the effort proceed. The big challenge is identifying such releases before they hit the web. We wish them luck.
The question: has anyone who works with PR Newswire begun to re-examine their own practices under the new regulations?