Publishing Perspectives is carrying what looks at first like a think piece addressing the dichotomy of how to address the issue of word-of-mouth recommendations in a technologically-driven world. Well, it looks like that from the headline, at least. It turns out the post itself is basically just an advertisement for Written Word Media, a company that creates individual web communities for different genres.
The entire so-called article is basically Written Word blowing its own horn about how it makes these different communities. I was going to quote a paragraph, but really, I couldn’t find something sufficiently non-advertorial enough to quote. I do hope Publishing Perspectives at least got a decent paycheck for carrying this advertisement disguised as news content.
As Nate Hoffelder notes in a comment to that article, yes, technology can replicate word-of-mouth—it’s called social media. That’s exactly technology replicating word-of-mouth. But every so often, someone gets a bee in their bonnet about how there needs to be some new technological answer to the question of recommendations from trusted friends. The problem is, while it may be possible to duplicate the recommendations, you simply can’t replace the trusted friends.