Three articles that are not strictly game design related, but interesting nonetheless.  First off, here’s an article that discusses how Netflix has reverse-engineered Hollywood in order to categorize all of their films – an article that will surely interest anyone who works with massive amounts of data.

“What emerged from the work is this conclusion: Netflix has meticulously analyzed and tagged every movie and TV show imaginable. They possess a stockpile of data about Hollywood entertainment that is absolutely unprecedented. The genres that I scraped and that we caricature above are just the surface manifestation of this deeper database.”

Next up are a couple of articles about companies trying to protect the sanctity of their own data.  Here is an article about how Reddit banned Quickmeme links because the founders of Quickmeme were reportedly using dummy accounts and/or moderator privileges to push their content.  Quickmeme was, previous to this, one of the most dominant content sources on Reddit before this, being a quick way to provide Philosoraptors or Yo Dawgs that seem ubiquitous on the Net nowadays (Memegenerator is now, I believe, the meme creator of choice).

[Reddit’s success] has resulted in the media organization like the Atlantic and BloombergBusinessweek paying off influential redditors to promote stories. These organizations have even had their own staffers embed themselves within Reddit to spam the site daily with links to their articles. Such activity has resulted in domains being temporarily banned on Reddit. It has also made redditors hypersensitive and paranoid about businesses taking advantage of their communities. This has particularly been the case on r/AdviceAnimals.

If Reddit Drama isn’t your thing, then there’s Google Drama.  Google has apparently banned Rap Genius, a lyrics site, for attempting to manipulate its way up the google search rankings.  Which is interesting, because figuring out how to move your link up the search rankings of google is now part of the core job description of about a gazillion marketing people.  Apparently, this can be taken too far.

Google took down Rap Genius after it was revealed that the lyrics website, which received $15 million in funding from Andreessen Horowitz last year, was offering bloggers exposure through its social media accounts in exchange for links to its website on their music blogs

When dealing with player-created content, game creators often have to deal with similar scams and attempts to ‘manipulate the market’ by organized and charismatic players.