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How the New York Times has described Buzzfeed over the years

Buzzfeed's rise to fame and fortune can be tracked surprisingly effectively by the different ways the New York Times has described it over the years:

Of course the descriptive matter changes over time in a way that tells a story. But the real thing to pay attention to when reading the New York Times is the use of the indefinite article ("a") versus the definite article ("the"). When the Times describes something with an indefinite article, they are signaling that it is perfectly okay for you to not know what they are talking about. When an institution really hits the big time, however, the definite article takes over in a clear sign that as a respectable member of society you ought to already know what they are talking about.

We can see here that Buzzfeed spent a little while in a transitional phase where they shifted back and forth from "a" to "the" but eventually it became definitive as in .

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