A year ago this October, Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos purchased the Washington Post for $250 million dollars from the Graham family which had owned the paper for over 80 years. Bezos set up new company called Nash Holdings LLC for ownership of the Post which is totally separate from Amazon.
When Bezos took over he made it a point to stress that the integrity of the Washington Post would not suffer after the sale and in fact it would get better. A lot of time and money has gone into both the Washington Post’s editorial division and it’s online and mobile based products, effectively bringing it current to modern day technology.
Well while the high standards of editorial content may still remain intact, advertising tactics may have just taken a nose dive.
Bezos’ other company, Amazon, you know the largest e-commerce site in the world, makes a pretty penny through affiliate programs. These programs allow web publishers, content creators and even businesses to make extra money by linking to products sold on Amazon.com within the content on their site.
It seems that Bezos’ own Washington Post isn’t off limits in the affiliate programs.
PandoDaily’s Paul Carr pointed out yesterday that affiliate links for Amazon are spread out everywhere across the Washington Post’s editorial pages.
Carr discovered that in a Washington Post story about the new cover of “Charlie And The Chocolate Factory” there is a link to purchase the book through Amazon.com. The link to the Roald Dahl book goes to Amazon affiliate “slatmaga-20” which Paul Carr discovered. That tag could stand for Slate Magazine which is a site with a partnership with the Post.
In other links the company is much more brazen about it, linking everything from book titles, movie titles and products to Amazon.com with an affiliate tag of “thewaspost-03” which is most definitely an in-house account.
This opens up the floodgates for sponsored content across the site to go right back to Bezos’ left pocket.