Iowa faux pas

Something’s missing this afternoon from the front page of the Des Moines Register’s website:


It’s the cleverly placed ad, purchased by Barack Obama’s campaign, that was there this morning:


(From Romenesko)

  • Jim

    I still see the ad when I visit and, judging by the caucus count-down, it is less than 15 minutes since you grabbed the screen shot (now at 7 hrs, 0 mins, 14 secs).

  • brian

    It is still there for me too. I’m in Iowa though… I wonder it that makes a difference?

  • Matt B

    The Target ad on the top right is also missing. It seems more like a pop-up blocker got them for you or their ad-server went down for a few minutes.

  • John P II

    Yep ad is still there – clicks through to Obama’s campaign website. I think it would be tough for the Des Moines Register to take the ad down after accepting the money to run it, but the line between advertising and journalism is getting increasing blurred (and deliberately so.)

  • Jamie

    Thank goodness for Bob’s “fresh eye on today’s stories.” NPR and MPR have redefined the term “ad nauseum” with their Iowa caucus coverage (and there’s still more to come tomorrow!).

  • Jamie

    I think the ad is kind of clever. And as long as the customarily places ads in that spot, I don’t see anything wrong or unethical with the placement.

  • Bob Collins

    //I don’t see anything wrong or unethical with the placement.

    Based on conversations on this point in the last 10 years, you’d get two different answers to the question. The journalists, who are afraid that the influence of money collides with their “art.” And the business side who thinks there wouldn’t be any art if it weren’t for the money.

    Actually, now that I think of it, that battle has been going on for decades.

    In any event, it still falls short of the “polar bear” front page for coke the New York Times created for its online site a few weeks ago, a horrible lapse of judgment and ethics.