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News, information, not for free...

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by JayFarrar, Nov 3, 2008.

  1. JayFarrar

    JayFarrar Well-Known Member

    Maybe that guy from Sweden can come back and explain why all this is wrong.


    Demand for news and information is at an all-time high.
    Osnos noted...
    Then you have this...

  2. Smasher_Sloan

    Smasher_Sloan Active Member

    It's what I've been saying for a while. More people are reading our stuff than ever, and we're going out of business.

    There's a bigger market for our product than there's ever been, and the business is failing.
  3. People are not willing to pay to get it online. We have to put the financial burden on the advertisers by showing them their ads are effective online.
  4. Some Guy

    Some Guy Active Member

    I wonder, out of curiosity, if people would be willing to pay for it online if they had no other choice.

    I mean, if I love the Portland Trail Blazers, and want to read about them on a daily basis ... and if the Oregonian wanted to charge me $10 a month or something ... I'd probably balk at first.

    After a couple of weeks of not knowing wtf was going on with the Blazers, I'd either plunk down the $10 or buy the damn newspaper.

    Maybe it's just me. But it would be an interesting experiment (on someone else's dime, of course), to see how many people WOULD pay, if the news was compelling enough.

    Another (crazy) colleague of mine thinks all newspapers ought to band together for one day and refuse to publish anything ... which would mean no fodder for blogs, and google, and yahoo! .... And a glimpse of what life would be like with no news.
  5. Joe Williams

    Joe Williams Well-Known Member

    So let's envision a world in which all the newspapers charged for their content, in some way, shape or form. Either outlet by outlet or in some massive consortium.

    How would that go over the first day? The second day? After a week? After a month? One year into the grand experiment, might not the newspapers have solidified their audiences and might not those paying customers, presumably more loyal and measurable, be worth more to advertisers?

    I think it's worth a try, given the scarcity of viable alternatives as all our ships be sinking.
  6. Some Guy

    Some Guy Active Member

    That's what I mean, Joe. I think, for a lot of people, news -- and, perhaps, sports news in particular -- are one of those things one takes for granted until it's gone.

    I could imagine an initial revulsion to the idea of paying, say, $5 a week for the local paper online. Until Joe the Reader realizes he's not getting news about his particular community, knows nothing about State U's new starting quarterback, and no longer gets to read the local columnist that riles him up so.

    Then, maybe he breaks down and pays the $5.

    Or, maybe he says the hell with it. I don't know.
  7. JayFarrar

    JayFarrar Well-Known Member

    That's not what the column is arguing.
    The column says not to charge individual readers, but charge the online companies for posting the publication's work.
    It really isn't that complicated. Post our story, pay a fee. Or pay us a portion of your online advertising.
  8. mustangj17

    mustangj17 Active Member

    But then you would go to espn, because they would cover it and charge you $8. Then the newspaper would charge you $6, ESPN would go to five. Eventually, one of them would go free, and we would be back to this same shit again.
  9. BYH

    BYH Active Member

    You keep coming up with ideas like that, Joe, and you'll never get your shot in upper management.
  10. Joe Williams

    Joe Williams Well-Known Member

    Promise, BYH? :D
  11. wicked

    wicked Well-Known Member

    Look at ad rates in the weekly shoppers, then look at ad rates in, say, The Boston Globe, or The Times.

    There is a marked difference. Even if the shopper had 1,000,000 daily circulation, no advertiser in their right mind is going to pay the same rate for a product where there is no "controlled" circulation, no idea often whether someone is reading the damn thing.

    It's why newspapers should charge for Web access. Leave your wire content for free, and make people pay for the original content.

    The only problem we might have is with TV stations ripping off our copy and putting it on their Web sites for free, just like they do now with our stories. Of course, we'll still run rings around them in the thoroughness and comprehensive nature of our coverage, with that 12th story on the municipal tax hike that the talking heads might spend 15 seconds on over the course of six months.
  12. Shaggy

    Shaggy Guest

    I'd pay $5 a month for an online news subscription for 3-4 newspapers, easily.
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