Selling Stock in Headlines

Eventually I will get to a post on copy editing — that all important duty of making sure text reads right and slapping a good headline on it. In my experience so far, copy editors are the most interesting people in a news room.

But this post is actually about a site I came across that has turned copy from news sources into a game. is a website that was just released. It tries to present news as stock, so you buy and sell what terms you think are going to be hot in the news. It’s a stock market for buzz words: words that
appear in the news are quoted in real time based on their presence in
3000 news sources. gives an instant picture of what the media are talking about and lets you speculate about the future.

Essnetially users users get to manage a portfolio of words as if
they were stocks. Users can buy and sell words and try to gain virtual
dollars based on their feeling on which topics will get the most
coverage, and rise the most in the coming hours, days or weeks. The
quotations rise or decline every hour, which gives a real momentum to
the game and makes it exciting for the players. It also stimulates
their curiosity on what is going on anywhere in the world.

As you can see in this graph, the stock for “Iran” is pretty low. If I were a stock man, I’d buy now, wait a couple months and sell when that stock begins to soar.
was first launched in France 2 months ago under the name
\”Lesmotsdelinfo\” and gained more than 5000 users only by word of
mouth and thanks to the buzz generated in the French blogosphere.

I wonder if it will make a splash here in the U.S. as well?

1 thought on “Selling Stock in Headlines”

  1. The other day my boss told a story about the “Five Elements” of a good magazine cover blurb. If you want your magazine flying off the newsstands, you just drop in as many of these as you can:

    1) New!
    2) Hot!
    3) Free!
    4) Win!

    And the bonus fifth element: Top Ten!

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