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Next up to charge: The Boston Globe

Discussion in 'Journalism topics only' started by Moland Spring, Aug 7, 2009.

  1. Moland Spring

    Moland Spring Member

  2. shockey

    shockey Active Member

    hey, as a consumer and sportspages.com junkie, i fear this. but as a journo who's livelihood depends on papers or paper.com surviving, i'm all for it. turn subscribers into online subscribers.

    has to happen for our survival, doesn't it? or is a simpleton such as myself missing something? ??? ??? ???
  3. Den1983

    Den1983 Active Member

    Yup, this definitely needs to be done. Good to see other papers taking route.
  4. lantaur

    lantaur Well-Known Member

    From a sports standpoint, I don't see how this is going to work. (Not to mention the fewer eyeballs will mean lower ad $$ - are you really going to make up that loss by charging? I doubt it, but we'll see). There are just way too many options out there. In this case, will the Boston Herald charge? What about MLB.com, Patriots.com, etc. I really don't know the Boston sports web scene ... but from an Orioles standpoint, if the Sun charged, I wouldn't bat an eye. There Orioles.com and Roch Kubato as MASN.com. Plus, who knows, maybe ESPN will make Baltimore its next local site and have content on there.

    I know papers need to do something; I just don't think this is it (again, speaking from a sports standpoint, although overall I don't think this strategy is going to work).
  5. FreddiePatek

    FreddiePatek Active Member

    I dunno ... if this was to be done, it needed to be done in the beginning. Seems to me the genie's out of the bottle. Charging people simply will make most go away.
  6. Batman

    Batman Well-Known Member

    Aren't most already going away? The way things are heading, what do we have to lose?
  7. Joe Williams

    Joe Williams Well-Known Member

    Agree with the "why not try?" attitude.

    At the same time, I have to admit that I am completely in favor of charging readers for the content I produce (not because it's so valuable but to find revenue to pay me). But when faced with paying to read others' work, my first reaction is: I'll go somewhere else for that info.

    Guess I can hardly blame the audience.

    With the metros, I've got to to think that those who subscribe to the paper version will want to access the online product. But if you're out of market or don't bother with the paper in market, will you really pay cash to follow the Pats or Celtics or Boston politics?
  8. lantaur

    lantaur Well-Known Member

  9. WriteThinking

    WriteThinking Well-Known Member

    That's just because you still can.

    But, don't you think that if most, or all, papers were to charge, then people who want the papers' news would pay?

    And, once newspapers start charging, who knows? Don't you think there's probably a good chance that a lot of other Web sites/outlets -- including team sites -- might all eventually do the same thing? Heck, "premium news" could be turned into a another revenue stream in teams' operations.

    People tend to follow each other, especially in this business. I know, that, unfortunately, seems like an oxymoron, or, like it should be one.

    But, as a general rule, all businesses also do certain things/get away with certain things (depending on your perspective) just because they can, and because everyone else is doing it.

    The market will bear it, and people value the product/protection/service enough for it to do so.

    This industry's main problem is that it has devalued itself in the eyes of its customers as a result of a variety of factors and influences, some internal and some outside. That has to stop, and everyone charging for their product again would be a good start. It has to be made so that people know that that's just the way it is. You know, like with any other business product.

    It may not be easy, and things might get worse before they get better. But, if everyone gets on board, media outlets may at least regain some measure of control.

    And customers will not expect to get something for free.
  10. crusoes

    crusoes Active Member

    And pretty girls will flock around sportswriters in bars.
    And Rush Limbaugh will apologize for being Rush Limbaugh.
    And Keith Olbermann will get over his Bush fetish.
  11. spud

    spud Member

    Look at the music industry. $20 CDs and internet availability pushed everything underground, but with the help of iTunes, $10 records and 99 cent songs, sales are starting to stabilize a little bit. Pirating will exist in some form until its impossible, which is likely never. On some level, the gooners that don't want to pay will be with our industry forever. But bands are chanting the "it's getting better man" mantra all over the country. After some initial pain I can see the same happening with us.

    People are going to be pissed for awhile. They'll turn to blogs and rely on that one sucker with a subscription to fill them in. Then (however long this takes I have no clue), if they're really interested in sports coverage, they'll realize where these blogs are getting their info and that even the blog dudes can't update proficiently without a subscription to the Web site... and voila, chain reaction comes back to us getting paid. That must be the model, anyway.
  12. FreddiePatek

    FreddiePatek Active Member

    I see your point. This is a good analogy. Perhaps we'll just have to ride some rough currents for a while. A little Darwinism might come into play as well.
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