Why has anime fan fiction invaded my Google News feed?

Is this news? Fan fiction and an adverticle? Seriously?

[Something very different this week: an app review, or perhaps an algorithm review!]

I found the first one sandwiched between a New York Times book review and a Wall Street Journal productivity hack for beating procrastination. The next day I found another, this time hidden among a pile of financial news websites still trickling out missed-the-rush Jack Bogle obituaries after his death last week. And I found another today, under a set of lifestyle articles and Trump fact-checks grouped into a quasi-advertisement encouraging me to “read more stories from the Washington Post” even though I’d already hit my monthly non-subscriber limit.

Why has anime fan fiction invaded my Google News feed?

For the past week, while scrolling through the morning headlines, I’ve been treated to a steady stream of stories from the esteemed muckrakers over at webnovel.com. For example:

The Ninja-verse’s Immortal Cultivator… The story of an oddly feminine male immortal cultivator in Naruto, and his adventures through the ninja-verse

Pokemon: Journey Towards Greatness… A war veteran and an anime fan as well, … now our MC has turned 82 years old … and waiting for death to take him away but will death be is [sic] end or will it start a new beginning, a new legend.

My Life With An Overlord And Anime System… *Ding- You have been selected to receive the Anime System. Please Think “Kono Dio Da!” to receive Hamon Beginners Pack or “Jajanken!” to receive Hunter X Hunter Beginners pack…*

Lovely little reads all, I’m sure, but do they really belong in a news feed amongst the Times, Post and Journal, Chronicle, Globe, and Tribune? Oh, what algorithmic hell hath I unleashed?

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