Eater.com: Bad PR Move or Brilliant Linkbait?

by claire on October 3, 2009

Eater.com launched a newly redesigned site yesterday.  As part of the release, as their audacious post explains, Eater is offering $25 to any food blogger who will agree to shut his or her food blog down (and post this yellow notice on the site).”

eater-notice

Is it repugnant? Flagrantly arrogant to think that they can offer a measly $25 to people to take down carefully crafted, precious food porn? Do they think there’s only room for one great food site on the Web? Methinks no.  Instead, I’m almost certain some smart bloke over at Eater knows exactly what they’re doing… starting a buzz, a stir, a melee of sorts… resulting in lots of comments, lookiloos and links around the net.  Pretty brilliant, I might add.  It could go very sour.  Piss off enough bloggers on the interwebs, and you may be blacklisted, but I predict with this one, the opposite will happen.

Results so far:

  • I popped over to backtweets.com and checked how many tweets happened mentioning their redesign or the $25 post since their first tweet 22 hours ago:
    80 (not that astonishing) and most echoing an equally WTF sentiment:
    hwoodhomemaker-eater-tweet
  • Inlinks referencing the post (according to Yahoo):
    20
  • Diggs:
    13

So, the numbers aren’t so great, yet… but I suspect this one will still pick up some steam and some more links, just like the 2 I’ve just given them.

Good job, Eater – love the creativity and your Spartacus bravery for taking a risk. Lookout for Matt Cutts, though, someone might say you’re paying for links! ;)

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