Newsfilter is Many Things to Many People

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Newsfilter is many things to many people. One person searching for information on “newsfilter” may be looking for information on Internet sites that allow users to help filter news up to the top, like Digg. Another person searching for “newsfilter” information may be looking for information on the project which is an effort to filter information posted to Usenet news based on user input, while still another may be annoyed at what mssv.net calls the “tendency of posts on MetaFilter to be far too ‘newsy’,” which is referred to as – yep – you guessed it – newsfilter.

These people probably do not have a lot in common – except for one thing. Each of them, when clicking on the first link they will find when searching for “newsfilter” on Google – will be taken not to information about the Usenet collaborative newsfilter project – not to Digg or the likes – not to a place to gripe about MetaFilter’s overly newsy style. No, they will be taken to Newsfilter.org – a porn site.


A full-on hard core, you can find anything you want type of porn site.

But lest you be too quick to judge, no, this isn’t a case of domain squatting or a smutty splog.

It is, in fact, a legitimate site, despite it’s seamy front.

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So why did a hardcore porn site call itself Newsfilter.org, of all things?

Well, some digging turns up that Newsfilter.org was created by Erik Barath, the same Erik Barath who was once the lead guitarist for now-defunct metal band I.N.C.. And the same Erik Barath who was behind the once popular Anti-MTV.com.

Anti-MTV.com was created to serve as an antidote to MTV, and in particular to their refusal to play metal until, as Barath once said in an interview, “only after they can’t ignore them anymore.”

 

Founded in 1999, Anti-MTV.com was shuttered when heavy hitter BMI came a’calling, and forced the site to shut down in the summer of 2002. (Said Barath at the time, “I’ve said for the longest time that lawyers are killing this country, and now lawyers have finally killed Anti-MTV.”) At about the same time, Barath announced that he was launching Newsfilter.org as “a news site with social and political commentary and political humor.”

And indeed, by all accounts, that is what Newsfilter.org first started out to be.

How it morphed into the adult site that it is today is anybody’s best guess. Our best guess is that, well, porn pays. And one thing that is clear is that Erik Barath has himself morphed from metal musician to ecommerce entrepreneur. In addition to Newsfilter.org, which boasts nearly 9 million unique visitors a month and has featured such high-profile advertisers as Sony Playstation, and Newsfilter’s sister video site, m90.org, Barath has just this year launched VidMax.com, “an exclusive line of jackass style videos, taking crazy videos to a whole new level.”

Barath, who once referred to lawyers as “legal pond scum” runs the new sites with partner – and lawyer – Elena Paraskeva.

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The Internet Patrol is and always has been free. We don't hide our articles behind a paywall, or restrict the number of articles you can read in a month if you don't give us money. That said, it does cost us money to run the site, so if something you read here was helpful or useful, won't you consider donating something to help keep the Internet Patrol free?
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