Tuesday, December 20, 2005

Sun-Times uses "Ebert" as menu item; Endgadget uses "Paris Hilton"

For some time I've been amused that the Chicago Sun-Times includes something unexpected alongside the usual News, Sports, Entertainment, Classifieds, etc. links you'd expect from a newspaper: "Ebert" is a main choice. Usually menu choices correspond to a section of the paper, not an individual writer. But Roger Ebert is so incredibly popular that he probably accounts for a huge fraction of the visits to Sun-Times.com, so they must have figured "What the heck, he's big enough to be his own section." (Insert rude remark about Ebert's girth here...)

Tonight I stumbled on this: Endgadget, a site that reports news and rumors about consumer electronics, has their own special menu item:

Yes, that's right: right there with cell phones, Ipods, and gadgets, we find Paris Hilton. What does Paris Hilton have to do with consumer electronics? I can't think of a direct link, but I bet a lot of the gadget nuts who click on this site are also prone to click on that link, driving up Endgadget's ad revenue. Sort of like the ads for strip joints in the sports section of the newspaper.


But now, there's more...

An old song from the 70s posits that "Everybody Plays the Fool -- Sometimes" ... and my colleague Justin Thorp has outed me as the fool. I followed a Google search to Endgadget, a site I thought I'd seen before. But the authentic gadget site is Engadget.com.

Google reveals 37,000 fools like me, out of 7 million who link to the real site.

It might be worth Engadget's effort to buy, or anti-cybersquatter halt, Endgadget. Or maybe they think we fools should be left to our own devices -- so to speak.