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If online media had a Henry Ford, it would be Peretti, who for more than a decade has been studying — and ruthlessly optimizing for — the ways people get information on the Internet. His success at goosing the rankings of HuffPost stories in search results fueled the site’s frantic growth; by the time he launched BuzzFeed in 2008, social networks were in bloom, hence the site’s wellknown reliance on shareable listicles like “15 Tiny Hats on Cats.” The formula is working: In August, BuzzFeed drew a record 85 million unique visitors — and a growing roster of heavyweight journalists help it break real news too.