Advancing A Buzzfeed Story

This assignment was really daunting to me, and I actually struggled a lot finding an error in reporting much less getting a response, but I found something.

On October 13 I emailed Buzzfeed about an error in information, and continuity within two Buzzfeed videos, and an article.

On the 13 I was scrolling through Facebook and stumbled upon a Buzzfeed video. Now this is all going to sound silly, but the video (here accompanied with a quiz the viewer can take) was of a few Buzzfeed Staff members being quizzed about male genitalia. One of the questions asks whether ‘blue balls’ or Epididymal Hypertension actually causes discoloration. The video claimed that is not true.

My understanding from previous reading, and high school sex education was that there is discoloration, and so I did some research to see if I was right or wrong, and sure enough I found a source through UCSB saying that there is discoloration.

But what confused me more, and ultimately made me decide to try and reach out to Buzzfeed was that I found another Buzzfeed video that made a claim contradicting the first video.

The second video was entirely about Epididymal Hypertension and whether or not there is discoloration involved, and in this video they concluded that while it isn’t common it does affect some people.

I went to Buzzfeed’s ‘Contact Us‘ page and attempted to submit video feedback through their comment submission form about what I had found, and after much editing, tinkering, and at least ten attempts at submitting my feedback I concluded their system was down. I tried to submit the feedback through their editorial feedback form too, but I still received the same error message. I even tried to submit a comment about their system being down through their technical feedback form, but I still got the error message.

I then turned to the makers of the videos, both of which appeared to be actual Buzzfeed employees and neither of which  had emails or contact information listed on their profiles. Then while searching the website for something to use I found yet ANOTHER article about Epididymal Hypertension which was ALSO written by a Buzzfeed staff member (it also said that there is no discoloration). This time the author, Casey Gueren, did have her email address listed.

I didn’t see any other options, so I sent her an email outlining the entire quest I had just been on for the sake of fact checking the information, and understanding why Buzzfeed had three videos/articles about the same topic but with contradictory information.

Unfortunately I have not seen any response from Casey, nor have I received any responses from Buzzfeed about receiving a weird amount of feedback submissions so I assume something was actually wrong with the system and none of my feedback went through.


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