Widely shared copy-and-paste statistic is touted by firm with ‘vested interest in promoting copy-and-pasting’

— From an infographic that appeared in Adweek

Romenesko reader Théophanidis Philippe was skeptical about the above statistic, which ran in last week’s Adweek. “I tracked — or tried to track — the original study and it seems to be a problematic source,” he writes. “Adweek, which you linked to, has Tynt as the original source of the study.”

He continues:

As it happens, Tynt is a “publisher company solution” and guess what kind of services it offers:

“Tynt inserts a page URL when copied content is pasted into emails and social sites, allowing more than 600,000 publishers to improve SEO, site traffic, content insights, and brand attribution.”

That’s not all. Tynt is a 33Across company. In its “Press” section (at the bottom of the main page) one can read: “A new study from web advertising giant 33Across indicates that copy-and-pasting, not share buttons, is still the most popular way of sharing web content.”

So 1) Tynt has 33Across as the source for the study; and 2) The tagline of the study works as a sales pitch on Tynt homepage.

Also from the “Press” section of Tynt homepage, if one clicks on the “Read more” link, one gets to a Fast Company article about the 33Across study. However, at the very end of this article, one can read: “It should be noted that 33Across has a vested interest in promoting copy-and-pasting: Among the company’s holdings is Tynt, a copy-and-paste optimization firm.”

That’s a cautionary note that will most likely be lost in all the … copy and pasting.

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