By April, he wants AOL editorial to increase its stories per month from 33,000 to 55,000.All of which means many more "stories" from AOL staffers (five to 10 a day is the goal), with a keen eye on money metrics. The plan includes almost nothing about editorial goals, quality, or better coverage. It's machine journalism at its rawest - or what AOL management would call "The AOL Way," a name that rightly deserves to be ridiculed.
He wants pageviews per story to jump from 1,500 to 7,000.
He wants video stories to go from being 4% of all stories produced to 70%.
He wants the percentage of stories optimized for search engines to reach 95%.
One journalist who joined AOL offered this response to Business Insider:
"AOL is the most f-----up, b------t company on earth," says one, who joined AOL in what he calls, "the worst career move I've ever made."An October 2010 study argues against turning online editorial into a content farm, saying better stories generate better ad revenue. But the insane valuation of Demand Media, said to be worth more than $1 billion, is certain to change minds.
Speaking of AOL's Patch network, I received a message from a Patch contributor who told me AOL plans to cut 30-50 percent out of freelance budgets. I'm not sure whether "The AOL Way" applies to Patch writers, but a smaller freelance budget means community editors will have fewer resources to create more content. Doesn't that sound familiar?