British newspapers paying Google for headline placement

Do I hear $10 for “Saddam Hussein hanging?” $15?

PaidContent highlights a Wall Street Journal report on the growing trend in the U.K. toward newspapers bidding on sponsored links on Google for news events. Some American newspapers have gotten in on the act too, including the New York Times, Washington Post and USAToday, according to the article.

I have no qualms about training journalists to write search-engine friendly headlines. Those headlines tend to work better on the Web anyway, and Google is the biggest driver of traffic just about anywhere.

Nevertheless, the question is: If this trend explodes here in the United States, will even mid-size and small news sites have any other choice but to join the auction?

About Danny Sanchez

Danny Sanchez is the Audience Development Manager at Tribune's Sun-Sentinel.com and OrlandoSentinel.com. Danny has been with Tribune since 2005 in a variety of editorial, digital and product development roles in Hartford, Orlando and Fort Lauderdale. He has also previously worked in the newsrooms of the Tampa Bay Times and The Miami Herald.
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