30 Minutes with Outbrain is a regular feature of The Blog in which an Outbrain staffer or guest contributor chronicles his/her navigation of Outbrain’s widget for a half-hour.

Article #1

I’ll start today’s post as I normally start my day’s content discovery: searching for breaking news on CNN.com. Today’s lead story is a report that says federal regulators are investigating Morgan Stanley, the lead underwriter for Facebook’s IPO, for allegedly sharing a negative assessment of Facebook with major clients ahead of the offering.

The piece cites a Reuters article that claims a Morgan Stanley analyst reduced his revenue projections for Facebook shortly before the company went public and shared his projections with investors.

The SEC did not offer any comment for the CNN piece.

Rough week for Facebook: Share value has decreased 18% from the offering price of $38.

But hey, at least Zuckerberg tied the knot.

Update: New shareholders are suing Facebook for sharing true valuations prior to the IPO with a select group of people.

Article #2

At the end of the CNN article I’m offered the following three links:

10 surefire ways to blow your job interview
10 Worst Cars of All Time
Obama’s Secret White House Exposed in New Book

I’m a sucker for top ten lists. Probably because I watched High Fidelity too often as a teenager. Did I really just admit that publicly?

Anyway, I click on the Ten Worst Cars of All Time link, despite the fact that I’ve never owned a car (I live in New York City, get a grip). The list was compiled by two dozen Edmunds.com staffers, who spent a couple of months refining a list of the 100 worst cars ever, according to the piece.

Among the worst: the 1979 Oldsmobile Cutlass Supreme Diesel, the 2003 Saturn Ion and the 1974 Ford Mustang (I think the Mustang is pretty sweet to be honest). The worst car of all time, according to the rankings: the 2001 Pontiac Aztek, which the piece credits with being “extremely ugly” and responsible for the destruction of Pontiac, an 84-year-old automaker. Brutal.

I MUST disagree with at least one selection on this list. Who wouldn’t cruise the boulevard looking for babes in this classic: The 1955 BMW Isetta. Are you kidding?! Making this the third-worst car of all-time? I call poppycock on this whole process.

Moving on before I blow a gasket. (You see what I just did there? Clever.)

Article #3

At the end of the top-ten list I’m presented with the following options:

The New Must-Have Tool
13 Things Your Grocer Won’t Tell You
10 Tips For Living Frugally
Obama is a One-Term President. See the Evidence.
The Penny Stock with a Billion-dollar Backlog

Top 10 lists are awesome. “13″ lists are even better! I can’t even imagine the heinousness my grocer isn’t telling me. I kind of don’t want to know, but what’s the point of content discovery if I’m not going to take the good with the gross?

The first secret listed isn’t heinous at all: “If you hate crowds and lines, shop at dinnertime.” That’s not groundbreaking, but it’s totally helpful.

Here’s something I didn’t know: “When people see signs with numbers-’8 for $10!’ ‘Limit: 5 per customer’-they buy 30 to 100 percent more than they otherwise might have.” Interesting. Mental note: Shop with eyes closed at all times!

This is amazing: “The baby formula is locked up because thieves resell it on the black market.” I’m already plotting Ocean’s 14. George Clooney steals the milk to feed his new baby with Julia Roberts, only to realize that the supermarket chain owner he’s been ripping off is actually Andy Garcia. Hijinks ensue.

Article #4

My next group of options is:

Extreme Beauty: 5 Women Who Took Looking Good Too Far (PHOTOS)
Important Things Your Urine Color Can Tell You
7 solid ways to save $1,000 in a year
5 Signs You May Have Hypoglycemia
How to Share Files Between Two Computers

I don’t want to see another photo of The Tanning Mom. I HAVE to!

I click on the Extreme Beauty link and the first thing I see is her beautiful, bronzed, bereft face. The Human Barbie, The Stamped Vamp, Cat Woman and Real-Life Anime are beautifully hideous in their own way, but I can’t embrace them as I have embraced The Tanning Mom.

Love her as I do and she will see the error of her crispy ways…

That’s the end of my thirty minutes. Which of these stories satisfied your content needs today?

Image Source: Bimmerin