The Griffin Chronicle

How BuzzFeed Started

Courtesy+of+Wikimedia+Commons
Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

Piper Johnson, Staff Writer

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BuzzFeed has grown into a multimedia phenomenon over the last decade.  It is a news and entertainment company with a focus on digital media that gets over 130 million monthly viewers.  Over the years, it has grown in popularity and we wonder, how did the website originate?  

Co-founder, John Johnson, said that while in graduate school, doing his senior thesis, he saw an advertisement on the internet of designing your own Nike shoes.  He started entering words to see what they would allow him to put.  He entered the word “sweatshop” and it went through.  He later received an email from Nike saying that that word was “inappropriate slang” and that he could not purchase the shoes.  He thought that was ridiculous and emailed it to some of this friends.  What he didn’t know was that his friends were going to share it with other people and pretty soon it became viral.  Shortly after, he started the Huffington Post with Arianna Huffington.  After working there for years, he sold it to AOL for $315 million.  He then started BuzzFeed.  Johnson said that BuzzFeed started out as an experiment out of a center called Eyebeam in Manhattan.  He started looking for people who knew how to use a computer and how to use the Internet.  He discovered Jonah Peretti from an email chain of messages.  Johnson hired Peretti to work for Eyebeam and he came up with a dozen new ways of advertising.  This was the start to the infamous website.  

BuzzFeed, today, gets the attention of so many people.  It’s hard to resist the urge to go on the site and read the articles because as time wasting as they are, you can’t help but get sucked into them.  They pull you in and keep you wanting to read more and more articles.  Their use of advertising is so clever because it grabs your attention.  Some of the articles they publish are so ridiculous that you can’t help but click on it.  Some of their most popular video series are the Try Guys, Tasty, and Worth It.  BuzzFeed has become a popular source of entertainment over the past decade!      

 

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