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Content farm

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Characteristics and Impact of Content Farms
– Some content farms have millions of articles and are valued in the millions of dollars.
– Demand Media planned to publish one million items a month, equivalent to four English-language Wikipedias a year.
– Associated Content was purchased by Yahoo! for $90 million, but was later shut down.
– Pay scales for content on content farms are low compared to traditional salaries received by writers.
– Content farm contributors may earn enough for a living by producing many articles per day.
– Content farms provide relatively low-quality content.
– Articles on content farms may not be written by specialists in the subjects they report on.
– Search engines see content farms as a problem, leading to less relevant and lower quality search results.
– The rapid creation of articles on content farms has drawn comparisons to the fast food industry.
– Content farms pollute the web environment by adding noise and reducing the value of relevant resources.
– Content farm writers are compensated at low rates, such as $3.50 per article.
– Rates for content farm writers are substantially lower than those for writers working for mainstream online publications.
– Content farm writers who produce many articles per day may earn enough for a living.
– Content writers on content farms are often women with children, English majors, or journalism students seeking supplemental income while working from home.

Backlash and Efforts to Combat Content Farms
– In a Google promotional video, the majority of links available were reported to be produced at content farms.
Google adjusted its search algorithms to provide better rankings for high-quality sites, as a response to content farms.
– The privacy-focused search engine DuckDuckGo blocks content from content farms.
– Search engines penalize content farms in their algorithms.
– Algorithms are designed to prioritize high-quality content.
– Content farms may experience a significant drop in visibility.
– Search engines aim to provide users with relevant and trustworthy information.
– Content farms struggle to maintain traffic and revenue.
– Search engines continuously update their algorithms to target content farms.
– Manual reviews by search engine teams help identify and penalize content farms.
– Users can report content farms to search engines for review.
– Websites can implement measures to avoid being mistaken for content farms.
– Collaboration between search engines and web quality workshops to address the issue.

Research and Future of Content Farms
– Content farms have not received much explicit attention from the research community.
– Hiring inexpensive freelancers to produce low-quality content was discussed as an alternative strategy to generating fake content automatically.
– There has been recent interest in automatically categorizing websites according to the quality of their content.
– A detailed study on the application of these methods to identify content farm pages is yet to be done.
– Content farms continue to evolve and adapt to search engine algorithms.
– Some content farms transition to producing higher-quality content.
– Increased awareness and education help users identify and avoid content farms.
– Search engines strive to improve their algorithms to better detect content farms.
– The battle between content farms and search engines is ongoing.

Definition and Characteristics of Content Farms
– Websites that produce large quantities of low-quality content.
– Focus on quantity over quality.
– Often rely on freelance writers or automated software.
– Content is typically optimized for search engines.
– Content farms generate revenue through advertising.

Negative Impact of Content Farms
– Decreases the overall quality of online content.
– Can manipulate search engine rankings.
– Misleads readers with inaccurate or unreliable information.
– Undermines the credibility of legitimate websites.
– Can harm the reputation of freelance writers.

Content farm (Wikipedia)

A content farm or content mill is a company that employs large numbers of freelance writers or uses automated tools to generate a large amount of textual web content which is specifically designed to satisfy algorithms for maximal retrieval by search engines, known as SEO (search engine optimization). Their main goal is to generate advertising revenue through attracting reader page views, as first exposed in the context of social spam.

Articles in content farms have been found to contain identical passages across several media sources, leading to questions about the site's placing SEO goals over factual relevance. Proponents of the content farms claim that from a business perspective, traditional journalism is inefficient. Content farms often commission their writers' work based on analysis of search engine queries that proponents represent as "true market demand", a feature that traditional journalism purportedly lacks.

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