$35 a Month for News?

Saturday, April 10, 2010

When newspapers first began to post news online in the '90s, they charged for that online access. Most of those newspaper sites became completely free to users later.

However, according to paidContent.org paywalls may soon be the trend again. PaidContent.org has found 20 newspaper sites that charge up to $35 a month for online content. $35 seems to be a little excessive. Especially, when a person can go to a newsstand and buy print edition for much cheaper.

This could be a ploy to get people to buy newspapers and get circulation numbers back up. So even if people don't want to pay $35 a month, the newspaper will still make money.

None the less, these 20 newspapers are the model for the hundreds of other newspapers that are still debating to paywall or no to paywall their Web sites. If the pioneering 20 newspapers are successful financially with their paywall venture, there could soon be a lot more than 20 news sites that are charging up to $35 a month for their content.


Kari.Ratkovich April 12, 2010 at 6:22 AM  

I definitely see an increase coming in the amount of newspapers that charge for their online news. With new media vehicles such as the ipad coming into the picture, newspaper businesses will find a way to capitalize on it. Why shouldn't they? People pay to receive the newspaper at their doorstep everyday. By the time they get the paper, they have often already heard about the headlines on the news/radio/internet. I think that if readers think that they will continue to get free news online, they are in for an awaking.

Meredith Jinks April 13, 2010 at 8:28 AM  

Internet users have not wanted to pay for content. It will be interesting to see if users can adopt a pay per use, or pay for content mentality.Busineses are going to have to offer something very compelling that users can not find anywhere else.

Katelyn Chamberlin April 13, 2010 at 9:13 AM  

It will be really interesting to see if users either pay for their content online (not likely), or if they will resort to picking up the print version. Personally, if I normally got my news online from a certain site, and they started charging for content, I would not pick up the print version. The fact that people are reading news online more than print is a sign of the times, and I don't believe they will resort to buying print. I believe they will start finding their news elsewhere.

Courtney Glienke April 13, 2010 at 9:31 AM  

I'd have to agree with Katelyn on this one. If you start charging ridiculous amounts of money for your online content I'm not going to pick up a print copy. I'll go find another source that's either free or at a price I'd be willing to pay. Even then, though, the site better be offering something much more than I can get for free.

Dana Lain April 13, 2010 at 1:14 PM  

I think there are always going to be sites that will give you free news. This is similar to the controversial debate about downloading music illegally. I don't know how many sites have been created and then banned. It will be interesting to see how this will play out.

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