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Study Finds 99.7 Percent of Blog Posts Are Identical

Nearly all blog posts regurgitate information written elsewhere, say researchers at the American Research Institute for the Advancement of American Research.

By (@tynanwrites)

September 10, 2010

The story you're about to read is not (entirely) true. It is, however, more accurate than most things on network television.

Newly published research reveals that virtually every blog post on the Internet is a nearly exact duplicate of some other post on the Internet.

A study of 10,987,346 blogs by the American Research Institute for the Advancement of American Research (ARIAAR) has discovered there are in fact only six sources of original content on the Web, from which every other blog draws.

The study also uncovered the following:

  • 27 percent of posts are identical word for word, save for typos and grammatical errors introduced by each new author.

  • 17 percent of posts are factually identical to other posts but end with two sentences of meaningless speculation designed to make them appear more thoughtful than the first 27 percent.
  • 12 percent of blogs are identical but also feature photos of large-breasted women completely unrelated to the topic at hand but pleasant to look at nonetheless.

  • 19 percent of blogs consist of the same factual content spun in slightly different ways to make them seem original, such as "Five Questions to Ask about ______," "Five Things You Need to Know About _____" or "Five Reasons Why ______ Won’t Succeed."

  • 47 percent of those blog posts are written by PC World’s Ian Paul.

  • 7 percent of blog posts are scraped from the original site by a bot,  translated into Chinese, then Serbo-Croatian, Swahili, and back into English before being reposted. They are invariably far more entertaining than the original blog post.

  • 11 percent of blogs have already repeated this story. 79 percent of them attributed it to Mashable.

The ARIAAR also found that the number of trending Google keywords in the headline, deck, and lead paragraph of any story are inversely proportional to the blog author’s IQ. Authors displaying high keyword/low IQ ratios have a bright future ahead of them working for Demand Media, AOL’s Seed project, or, notes lead ARIAAR researcher Renard Fox.

"Mindless repetition is the wave of the future," says Fox. "In the future, everyone will spend most of their time repeating each other."

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