Multimedia News Sites that Refresh Constantly are an Affront to My Intelligence

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I spend a lot of my day reading news. When I say “a lot” I mean roughly 2 – 3 hours of it.  Maybe this is normal in this day and age. Through my daily readings, I have come to understand the best way I absorb and retain information gathered from the internet, and I realize my way is in direct reaction to being “plugged into various magical boxes”, whether they be computers, television (and music videos with 3 – second cuts) and/or video game consoles.

When I find a website that keeps my attention for more than 30 minutes, I am delighted. If it is a news website, even better. If an article has video, audio, pictures and paragraphs? Heavaaaaaaan (in a sing-song voice)!  When news sites mix mediums, (CBS Chicago is my example), the pause I take from text to listening/watching related audio/video gives me time to contemplate the issue, leading to a better understanding of what I am reading. Sometimes, I get so confident with all the information I have processed that I form my own opinions on the issue! (How wacky is that!?)

CBS at face value looks like the perfect site for me, and it could be if they gave this habit up. All articles are related to Weis and his retirement, an issue I was looking into when I noticed this dirty little habit of CBS (habit is the title, duh!)

Scroll down this article Weis: “I can’t make everyone happy” to see how well CBS Chicago mixes Picture, Text, Video, Text, Audio, Text, Audio, Text, Audio, Text, Video, Text. Text paragraphs are relatively short and evenly spaced. However, because there is so much multimedia, the chance that I am going to be listening or watching something when the web page refreshes automatically is very high. To get through everything on that article linked above I had to restart some radio or video segment on three separate occasions. It was enough to make me WTF.

I understand that this is a ploy to drive up page numbers to show advertisers.   I get it. This next move of yours (I am talking directly to CBS right now), is beyond obnoxious:

Upon completion of the  last video on CBS articles (see Clock Nearly Run Out For Police Supt Weis), the video news ad box on the bottom right will automatically start playing some Katie Couric  hospital endorsed segment telling me to get a rectal screening before it’s too late. Even worse than Couric’s interest in my ass health  is the dreaded ghost ad: sometimes the page will refresh and an ad will play but the video will be unfindable!  Where’s it playing from? Who knows!

That said, thanks for giving me enough information to develop opinions of my own, CBS. /hattip

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2 Comments on “Multimedia News Sites that Refresh Constantly are an Affront to My Intelligence”

  1. spudart says:

    I’m with ya. Auto-refreshes to drive up page counts are ridiculous.

    The chicago tribune does something equally ridiculous with their photo galleries. To view all the photos in a gallery, you have to click through all the photos. If you want to share photo #36 out of #50, you can’t point directly to photo 36, instead you have to tell your friends to click 36 times. And even then, if the Chicago Tribune updates their gallery, the photo will be lost on a different click count.

    • Spudart, the reason you mentioned is the very reason why I avoid looking at chicago now galleries.

      the content has to be really, really interesting for me to subject myself to that.


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