We've been explaining for years that you absolutely can compete with free
, and in the last few months a bunch of news publications have figured out an interesting strategy that's working surprisingly well: taking old content from their magazines/newspapers/blogs/etc. and repackaging them as cheap ebooks
. And, even though much of that content is available already for free, the convenient package combined with the low price (and the rapid spread of tablets and ebook readers) seems to just hit the sweet spot that makes people willing to pay. We'd actually been planning to do something similar ourselves with some of our past content, just as an experiment, and still plan to do so soon, but it's great to see how well it seems to be working for a variety of publications. It's not a paywall since all the content is available for free, but it is about giving people a reason to buy.