Why Are So Many Articles Essentially Duplicates of Each Other?

Executive Summary

  • As media has consolidated, many articles are duplicates of one another.
  • We cover why so many articles are now so similar.


This topic started as a discussion around the article How to Understand Big Tech’s Degradation of Media.

How German Media Has Been Similarly Degraded as US Media

In Germany, we are some years behind this development I guess but the direction is similar. The quality of newspaper articles is another symptom, a lot of copying of large media and newspaper agencies like DPA, extremely large media entities like Bertelsmann and Funke Mediengruppe cooperating e.g. in Content Alliance so you often get the same content in all papers and magazines. (this is) Partly a reaction to decrease of advertising income due to google etc but also a focus on increase of income regardless of lack of quality and pluralism.

There is an interesting article in German.

The 3rd point is interesting, about everybody without any insights in anything can get attention in forums, etc making it hard for high-quality journalism to stand out. – Dr. Rolf PaulsenĀ 

Rolf and I see the same thing. Boring copycat media with little chances taken. I see it in the US media, and Rolf sees it in German media.

Duplicate Articles

On Rolf’s point about duplicate articles in the German media, recently reading about the Salesforce/Slack acquisition, I found what seemed to be the same articles — mostly about stock prices, the total value of the acquisition, etc..

However, I found very little that discussed if the acquisition technically fit with Salesforce. In fact, I found nothing that explained the technical fit between Salesforce and the Slack acquisition. The only explanation I could find is that Salesforce could use the huge Slack customer base to force its application. This is really the primary motivation for acquisitions — which is an approach to “buying customers.” Will Slack really ever be relevant to the technology of Salesforce? I don’t know, and I did not see anything performing the analysis or explaining the pro or con.

Certainly, Slack is a type of notification system, so there could be a scenario where a sales manager is directed to review new forecasts entered into CRM. Still, I would have liked it if a person who uses Salesforce and Slack constantly performed this analysis and made the case. And I did not find that type of article.


Modern media consolidation has lead to watered-down articles that are virtual copies of each other. One extreme example of this is the reporting on McDonald’s leveraging AI for its menus, as we cover in the article How Awful Was the Coverage of McDonald’s AI Acquisition.

Much of the coverage is simply repeating or replaying quotations from the marketing or PR department of major conglomerates.