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Why Is There So Much Clickbait From Comic Sites?

Before I started writing almost daily for Comic Universe, I was a huge fan of everything from Marvel, DC, Star Wars, Power Rangers and more. I, unfortunately, was one of those people that would read an article online and believe it to be true.

Once I started this, I realised how far these sites, articles and YouTube videos actually go. Not only that, I realised just how wrong they are as well.

Now I asked the question of why in the title. I think that’s obvious. It’s not just about the clicks, let’s be honest here. It’s about the money. When YouTubers or sites care about clicks, they tend to put out good quality content, accurate content at that.

Nothing stresses me more seeing an article reach every corner of the world with thousands of shares and excitement, but it’s just straight-up wrong. A simple Google search will always clarify them.

Another thing I’ve started to see recently is a lot of these sites will always begin with; “according to our sources”. Surely if these sites know their sources are wrong at least 98% of the time, why would you keep trusting them?

These sites will throw out some crazy ideas, and flood the internet with multiple articles all falling back to the same ‘idea’. People will call it out, but the majority will share it and act as if it’s happening. Then on the off chance it happens, which is fairly rare, then it’s a case of “we reported that first”. When in hindsight, it should be; “we guessed that first”.

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What doesn’t sit right with me, is people will share the articles massively. Know they’re wrong, but then continue to support them by sharing future articles or videos. A case point would be that it was ‘reported’ David Mazouz would show up in the CW’s Crisis on Infinite Earths as Batman. This article reached far, even to my friends on Facebook. Of course, some of us knew this wouldn’t happen, and it never, but next to zero people call them out on it.

Now don’t get me wrong, websites and content creators do make mistakes. Sometimes their sources are off, and that’s fine. You can never be 100% accurate, especially when you’re reporting scoops. More so, a lot of websites such as Deadline, even despite his issues, Jeremy Conrad was quite reliable, these guys have quite a higher turnaround for accuracy.

Then on the flip side, you have sites that are on the opposite end of the spectrum giving around a 1-2% accuracy, this has been proved by people who have called these sites out. Even going as far as investigating hundreds of articles. What makes it worse, is these outrageous articles are so well written, with most of them having well-built websites too, I can sometimes understand why people would fall for it. I was one of them that used to fall for it after all.

This article is not to blow our own horn or anything as such, or to big ourselves up higher. One of our main goals, when we started this, was to ensure that everything we put out was accurate. We aren’t in the market for scoops, we just report on the scoops that look likely to be true, or are true. We will always make that clear before the article to solve any confusion.

Case point again with the Oscar Issac reports that will play Moon Knight in the upcoming MCU Disney+ show. It was reported by Deadline, and other reliable sites – so it’s likely to be true, so we wrote on it. You can see it here.

I’m not saying you shouldn’t read these sites at all. All I am saying is double-check. If only one site is reporting something huge such as RDJ returning for Iron Man 4 (which has been and still is reported), just double-check. We know RDJ is most likely done with the role, but could still return in a cameo state potentially, we know Iron Man 4 is not going to happen.

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News such as that would be rife, and monumentally huge across social media and huge websites. Even sites such as National news would report something as big as that. If only one or two sites are reporting that RDJ will return for Iron Man 4, you know fine well it’s false.

I’m not in a position to name these sites, or call them out individually, because if I’m being honest, there’s way too many out there now. It does ruin the industry, especially for sites that genuinely just want to publish the good stuff to viewers. That’s what we prefer to do. We don’t care for money, clicks or anything. If these articles only gets 2 or 3 clicks then I’m okay with that, because I do this as a hobby. I love doing this, and it’s never been in our remit to try and make a quick $. We know we could, after all, it’s easy with the right marketing technique. We started this because our ideologies are in a much better place.

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Daniel Lewandowski

28 years old. Founder, and co-owner of Comic Universe. Journalist specializing in the Arrowverse shows, and the MCU. Creator of the Comic Universe website.

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