Once-Great Politico Sinks Into Sensationalism

Polanski piece shows site's 'clicks are king' mentality
By Nick McMaster,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 9, 2009 5:56 PM CDT
The logo of 'The Politico'.   (Politico)
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(Newser) – For a while there, Politico seemed to be the best new media journalism had to offer—hard-nosed investigations with a smart, web-centric approach. But lately, it’s been falling prey to the anything-for-a-click mentality you’d normally associate with the Drudge Report or Huffington Post, writes Andrew Sargus Klein. A Wednesday piece with the loud headline “Roman Polanski backers gave $34k to Barack Obama, DNC" is but one example of Politico’s new ugly side.

The piece, which boils down to the unsurprising revelation that many of the Hollywood figures calling for Polanski’s release donated to Obama or the DNC “isn't, say, not allowed, nor is it necessarily unfair,” Klein writes for SpliceToday. But it represents a “type of journalism that simply demands you click on the headline regardless of what lies behind it”—the kind of journalism that “will turn Politico's front page into something more akin to CNN than the New York Times.”