Nobody is suggesting that the Web should somehow accommodate the rococo glories of The New York Observer’s headlines in that paper’s prime. But the need to attract attention from computer-generated algorithms sometimes makes the headlines seem like a machine thought them up as well.
“We reject the idea that there are only two options, between a really creative and a boring headline. There is a lot of sunlight between those two options,” said Jim Brady, general manager of Politico’s coming local Washington site called TBD.com. “The headlines don’t have to be boring, but they have to be descriptive and direct so that they show up in mobile and RSS feeds in a way that lets people know what they are being asked to click on.”
I agree wholeheartedly with Brady’s take. Headlines don’t have to be one extreme or the other.
Also, people, don’t fall for linkbait. Publishers and advertisers value your eyeballs so please don’t sell them cheaply.