Native advertising, or sponsored content, is not a new subject to readers of our newsletter. Whether it's an opinion piece in the Guardian or a New York Times article, we have reported on the questionable practice of disguising ads as news stories. Now an article in the Columbia Journalism Review dives deeper into the problems that this type of media content create.

The example is a new "content studio" at Conde Nast that has been created specifically for developing and integrating sponsored content into its editorial calendar. In announcing this new collaborative approach to developing this type of content, the media publisher intends to partner with its corporate clients to develop and deliver advertorial content to subscribers at scale.

In fact, the organization goes as far as labeling advertisers as storytellers and publishers, taking the practice to a new and more acceptable level. While media companies may see this type of advertising as simply another commodity to sell to companies looking to break through to customers in a cluttered media landscape, the underlying question exists how do consumers decide if they are reading news or ads?

As the article suggests, the line between delivering the news and catering to advertisers is becoming increasingly blurred, creating both a conflict of interest and a possible loss of brand reputation. Is the short term cash generated by these practices worth the long term erosion of credibility and integrity? Stay tuned.