Barron’s Bias Continues

Posted: September 24, 2007 in Technology and Business
Not exactly sure why Barron’s gets my goat.  I guess Barron’s bias against online advertising — and in particular Google — just bugs me. 
 
Barron’s started off a recent piece with:
 
     "Ever since Google (ticker: GOOG) whiffed on its second-quarter earnings…"
 
GOOG didn’t whiff.  Journalism like this did.
 
To add insult, the article is supposed to be about how the melt-down in subprime could affect online advertising.  Certainly a good topic to discuss. 
 
But, rather than staying on topic, Barron’s introduces a number of petty and unrelated GOOG jabs into the mix, then stretches for a conclusion. 
 
The kicker:  Barron’s ridicules the notion that online advertisers could benefit from a slump as:
 
     "…reminiscent of the ruminations heard before the dot-com implosion."
 
Which, by the way, is exactly what the Financial Times concluded in a recent piece:
 
     "Online advertising spending is widely predicted to continue its strong growth even if a US economic downturn squeezes the advertising sector as a whole.  Indeed, pressure on companies to cut costs if the economy softens could even hasten the switch in spending from traditional media to more targeted and measurable digital forms."
 
Here’s the real difference between Barron’s and FT.com reporting:
 
Barron’s superficially uses the woes at Countrywide Financial to support its thesis… while FT.com uses actual data from Countrywide Financial:
 
     "Among US mortgage lenders, Countrywide has, for example, increased its share of online ad spending from 21 per cent to 55 per cent in the last 12 months, according to Sanford Bernstein."
 
Two very different conclusions, eh?
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