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We Need Your Email Address

"In order to combat the fracturing of social media platforms, a Google discoverability crisis fueled by AI generated spam and AI-fueled SEO, and a media business environment that is in utter freefall, we need to be able to reach our readers directly using a platform that we own and control."

For every publisher right now, email seems to be the only option. This is the first time I've seen this argument about AI scraping: usually the need to own your own relationship comes down to avoiding the thrash of different social media business models, which I've written about plenty of times before.

This idea that putting your content out there for free will only lead to it being rewritten by AI and repurposed by spam blogs could be the death of the open web. This is particularly true in light of Google's apparent refusal to downgrade machine-written content.

The idea is simple and awful: these spam sites rewrite human-written articles in an effort to capture search engine clicks themselves, instead of the people they stole from. They run ads against this spam. Because it's all machine-written, they can do it at scale.

Even if you don't agree that the web needs to be intrinsically protected (hi, we're enemies now), it seems obvious to me that incentives should be aligned towards publishing unique, useful information rather than superficially grabbing clicks through AI-driven SEO spam. I don't know what's going on inside the search engine businesses, but they need to consider what's going to be good for their businesses in the long term. This isn't it.

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