It is normal to find on the internet articles of dubious origin and even more doubtful content. What is not so normal is to find those articles published as if they were part of the editorial line of some media.

This is what happened in Diario 16, a website that has nothing to do with the magazine or the old newspaper of the same name. Even so, this medium published among its pages a strange article explaining how to hack a WhatsApp account or how to access Netflix for free. How can that happen?

Mixing own contents with sponsored

We have the answer in the sponsored content purchase platforms . There are several services that allow you to publish or buy reviews of any kind for different prices, which are greater the more relevant is the website where they are published.

It was explained by Julio Rodríguez Cruz ( @thisjrodriguez ) after replying to @SoydelBierzo , who detected the problem in the pages of Diario 16. This online newspaper takes advantage of the domain of the old Diario 16 that existed from 1976 to 2001 and has its own contents, but also offers its presence on the internet for sponsored content.

This is what many other media do, which make use of platforms such as Unancor, PrensaRank or Publisuites. In all of them it is possible to access a catalog of “blogs, newspapers, influencers and editors” -as they indicate in Publisuites, for example- to which to direct those promoted contents.

Linkbuilding, one of the keys

What do these services offer? A way to promote a product or servicethrough a sponsored content. These companies act as intermediaries between the media (in this case newspapers and online magazines, blogs, influencers accounts in social networks) and the company that wants to promote itself through them. It is advertising something more directed and also something different from the traditional one.

What companies that advertise with this method achieve is visibility, comfort (these companies usually write the texts themselves with the links indicated by the advertiser), brand building (branding) through this diffusion in these media, and something also important: try to gain ground in positioning .

The linkbuilding allows those links that the companies “manage to strain” in those media add points in search engines to try to place them higher in the results of different terms.

This is how these companies work

The operation of these services is very simple: once you register, you “buy” an article for your project (“I want a 700-word article about my website selling vacuum cleaners”) and choose the medium in which you want to insert it . Obviously the prices vary according to the length of the article, its structure and of course the medium to which it is addressed: the more relevant a medium is, the more it will cost to buy a sponsored content to publish it.

In this offer of available media is in which those responsible for these websites make their visibility available to take advantage of and monetize the effort they make with their own content. As this user commented on Twitter, this medium offers to publish that content on its website for 80 euros , something that gives an idea of ​​the figures that can be moved in this area.

This is what happens in this particular case with Diario 16, which nevertheless has committed a dangerous error with the sponsored content: it is important that these media are able to control and censor what has just been published among its pages, because the result can be harmful despite having generated income. The article has been removed from the medium, however, and it is only possible to access it through cached copies like the one available in Google .

Here it is difficult to know if the failure has been the responsibility of this medium or the intermediary that has managed that operation, but this is a good example of how the filtering and editing of content that is so important for its own content can become so even more in content that comes from outside.