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No free lunch in free news

Great article yesterday by the Financial Times’ reporter John Gapper: “The conflict of interest in free news” [1]. The issue of conflict of interests is very important to us, as is the issue of information sourcing. As more and more people read the news and research specific topics via Twitter, Facebook and RSS it’s very important to understand that ALL sources have their biases, prejudices and conflicts of interest. Of course the highlighted story of TechCrunch and its proposed VC fund is conflict of interest taken to an almost absurd degree, but it’s more common than we think. Mr. Gapper quickly relates the TechCrunch issue with that of sell-side research. The most important reminder is this: “The truth is that, no matter how loudly people protest that they have safeguards in place and will not abuse their power, conflicts of interest lead to abuses as surely as rivers flow to the sea. Even if they are disclosed in disclaimers, as banks now do with investment research, bad things will happen.”

If it seems like we’re selling you on the Curation/ Filter trend that Buysiders.com feeds on, we’re not. No matter how hard we try to avoid our own conflicts and biases [2] from influencing our writing (subconsciously), we’ll always be the official blog of an asset management company in Brazil. We minimize it by not writing about specific companies and by not providing investment opinions – we’re just here to show you part of our internal content production [3] that results from our information sourcing and processing.