Ha ha ha, via Balloon Juice:
If last night’s “scoop” that Amazon.com’s Jeff Bezos had a top secret plan to deliver packages by drone was supposed to restore 60 Minutes’ tarnished reputation, this blogger ain’t buying it.
What a load of utter bullshit. The idea defies common sense, logic, and economic reality, not mention civilian airspace. The whole thing had the stench of a “balloon boy” hoax to me. But that didn’t stop every single freaking news outlet from picking up the story and running with it. Even the dang BBC World Service had a long piece about it on the radio this morning.
All you need to know about Amazon’s mythic drone delivery program is that this BS piece ran on the eve of that other media-manufactured hoax, the so-called “Cyber Monday.” I’ve always wanted to know who invented “Cyber Monday,” I mean, it’s not like we all don’t have home computers and can shop online whenever we damn well please. What makes Monday so special? Absolutely nothing. Some marketing person invented this meaningless consumer BS. Forgive me but I refuse to play along.
But you know who will play along? 60 Minutes and every other media outlet which decided to give Jeff Bezos and Amazon loads of free publicity. Which, near as I can tell, is just about everybody.
Business Insider did the math:
How much was that free advertising worth?
“60 Minutes” gave more than 15 minutes to its Amazon story. A 30-second spot during the 7 p.m. show usually costs just over $100,000.
If you figure Amazon got 30 30-second commercials’ worth of time, you can estimate that it got about $3 million worth of “earned” media.
But $3 million is probably a very low estimate. That’s just the cost Amazon would have had to pay to reach “60 Minutes’” 13 million viewers. Thanks to all the coverage Amazon Prime Air has gotten in other outlets, many more millions of people are talking about the company today.
Yes, do remind me how blogs killed journalism. I’m all ears.
Apparently “drones” are the new “outragous campaign ad” PR stunt. You know how during campaign season some candidate posts a really heinous ad on YouTube which gets everyone riled up and the news media covers it as news, so the campaign doesn’t have to buy airtime? This is that:
After the “60 Minutes” show last night, a Hacker News reader compiled a list of previously announced delivery drone programs, many of which were also PR stunts:
Textbook drone delivery
Cake drone delivery
Pizza drone delivery
Parcel delivery drones
Beer delivery drones
Taco delivery drones
Sushi delivery drones
General delivery drones
Stupid news media falls for this stuff every damn time. Pwned by marketing people, meanwhile we’re supposed to believe everything else you people tell us? Pfft. Offa my lawn (and taxpayer-funded airwaves). If I wanted to watch free advertising I’d switch to a damn infomercial channel.