The subjective meaning of words can be a powerful thing if you stop and think about it. We might wonder if love means the same thing to us as it does to a loved one or what kind of chair they picture in their head when you say the word “chair”.
So it is with the recent changes to the interview with Charles Band that Chris Alexander posted to Shock Till You Drop recently – you might recall he was found to have taken the interview straight out of the pages of the OTHER publication he edits without attribution and pasted it into a publication which promises original and exclusive content. Well, as we saw the article updated with due past credit applied there was a word that stuck out to me as one of those subjective kind of terms.
Now, this may be a minor point but I think it is worth exploring just what Alexander and Crave Online Media mean when they tell us that “portions” of this interview were published in Delirium Magazine. Fortunately I was able to acquire a digital copy of Delirium #6 and see for myself to test my subjective notion of what a portion is against theirs. I invite you now to do the same and ask yourself how this “portion” business plays into a content strategy based on original content.
Here is the interview as it appeared in Delirium:
LPP has done some basic text analysis using simple word counts as well as an open source text comparison tool called Diffchecker. Here are our results:
Running it all down we find the Shock piece is longer by only 22 words, a very slight word count deviation of 1.7%. Now word count only tells part of the story – we still don’t know which words might be the same and which words might be different. Turning to Diffchecker, which examines each word and compares, we find that the Shock piece had 65 words removed and 67 words added for a total change of 132 words – a very slim 10% of the total word count. We can say with certainty the remaining words, all 90% of them, are identical to the Delirium article and now we know what a “portion” means to Crave – it means “the majority”.
This only makes questions I posed earlier more pressing – does this represent a change in content strategy on the part of Crave Online? Are they all about reprinting content now? Or is there a monkey with a wrench in the works?
I’m sure readers would love to know but so far, Crave isn’t talking.