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Written Infomercial. How Writers Lie to You to Convince You to Shop

By Edited Jan 19, 2014 0 0

It's all about the money

How many times have you read something on the internet – someone’s experience doing something or using a product – and thought “Wow!  That looks great!  I should try that!”?  Lots, probably, all of us have.  How many times did you stop to think “I wonder if that whole thing was made up”?  Probably never, I know I didn’t until I started looking into the crowdsourcing thing.  While investigating this I discovered that many people have no interest in presenting information, or telling you a great story about what they did, instead they’ve made up this completely artificial “article" for the sole purpose of getting you to buy something.  Yes, your favorite blogger or writer could just be scamming you.  It’s a painful thought.

How can they do it? Well, even a mediocre writer can sound convincing if they use enough “I”s and “me”s.  They can even produce something that convinces you that they know all about the subject matter they’re presenting to you.  Case in point:  I have written three articles using these “infomercial” type articles to show you exactly how it’s done.

I wrote this without knowing what a dongle is

dongle

Do you know what a dongle is?  I certainly didn’t, and I’d wager that very few people in the US do, but despite knowing nothing about them, I agreed to write three “articles” about dongles.  I agreed to this before knowing that the guy that wanted them did ad copy for a company.  So here I write three fake “articles” about something I’ve never heard about, and he decides not to use them.  At least I assume he didn’t use them, as I was never paid for the work.

Well, what do I do with three fake articles?  Use them as a lesson for smart readers about not believing what’s on the internet.  When you read someone’s description about how much they enjoyed a product, do you believe it?  Does it make you want to rush out and get that product?  Chances are it was all made up by someone like me.  Someone who’s pretty good at sounding convincing.  Someone who will make a commission if you buy the product.

Just to clarify here, for this “article” I am not making any commission.  I’ve taken the name of the company out and I’m just presenting it to you as an example of, well, how easy it is to fool you.  You tell me, after reading this, have I convinced you that this is the best dongle ever?

**********************

 

Ad disguised as article

As a pseudo techie-nerd, I frequently get asked advice about all things computer so when a friend asked for advice about a dongle, I had to admit that I didn’t know.  My knowledge is more on the software side of things, as my hardware setup works for me and I haven’t felt the need to change it.  Little did I realize how valuable a ***** dongle would actually be to me.  In addition to being a nerd, I also like to travel, and travel for long periods of time.  Sure, I’m happy now, but as I gear up to leave home again and spend months traveling, I clearly need to spend some time rethinking how I approach my internet access.

In the past I’ve always relied on finding internet cafes, but as the world progresses, I’m progressing too.  There’s no need to cart around a heavy laptop when, with a mobile phone and a dongle I can get ultra-fast internet speed all over the UK.  The ability to work while I’m traveling, and do it anywhere, is not something that was available when I first started backpacking, many years ago.  My access was limited, and I wasted a lot of time looking for somewhere with a good connection, that wasn’t expensive.  A ***** dongle will allow me to check in, download, upload, whatever I need, without the stress of finding a café or business that offers internet.  More time in the Museum!  Yeah!!

I even love the design that’s gone into this thing.  The ***** dongle USB connector tucks in which is perfect for someone like me that tends to throw stuff in her backpack and move off quickly.  The more streamlined my devices are, the easier it is to pack them, and the less likely they are to be damaged while I travel. It even stands up like an antenna if I want!  Woot!  Small, light, portable, and hard to break, this ***** dongle has my name written all over it.  Who would have thought that in just a few years we’d go from those ten, fifteen pound laptops and cords to something that fits in your pocket or can be tucked into the side pouch of your backpack?  I’m feeling more modern already.

Still a little more research to be done though.  I’ll need to figure out if the best course of action is to get one before I leave the states, or wait until I’m in the UK.  How complete is the network, and will I be going anywhere with limited access?  It seems that there are few dead spots so I’m mostly concerned about ‘less’, rather than ‘no’ access.  And of course, this will work fabulously in the UK, but what about other areas?  Now that I’ve had my eyes opened to the world of dongles I need to figure out how to incorporate them into my travels.  Even though my laptop has gotten quite a bit lighter over the years, the freedom this teeny little bit of technology provides me is something you just can’t put a price on.  I just can’t wait to start using this, and I’ll have to send my friend a photo of me in the park, using the dongle that she clued me into learning about.

*********************

Convinced?

Does it sound real?  All I did was look up the features of the dongle and compare them to other dongles.  I mixed this with my real-life travel experience to try to convince you that this is something I really need.  I was somewhat honest in that I told you that I had to do research about this thing, but the reason why is a complete lie.  I tried to personalize it even more by adding substandard words (Woot) and exclamation points.  I really did try to make it sound real.

That’s it.  Five hundred words of completely made up nonsense.  We don’t use dongles in the US, and I’m not even entirely sure I have described it correctly, but I tried to hedge that by telling you I’m from the US.  Will you run out and buy one?  If you do, would you mind sending me a check….. Thanks

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