Newsweek editor Gersh Kuntzman to Newsweek Media Group interim Chief Content Officer Johnathan Davis:
“So you should be honest with everybody in this room: Are we running a money laundering operation? Are we evading taxes? You need to tell us that because we can’t work here if you’re a liar.”
This is what the ad model does to content of all kinds: blogs, podcasts, Youtube, etc. It's a broken model. I think it's also safe to say that online ads have become malware. At the very least they eat up massive amounts of your data plan and track your movements across the web. At most, they are traditional malware trying to install something on your devise to do god knows what.
What's in question with Newsweek is whether they're gaming the numbers to overcharge advertisers. This is a common practice. The ad model doesn't work for the advertiser either. Everyone is being screwed here. The reader is taking the brunt of it, though.
This is just the beginning of the reckoning for publishers. Install a good ad blocker on your devices (I like 1blocker) and don't visit sites from desperate publishers willing to compromise anything to save a buck.