from the good-riddance dept
The New York Times’ plan to lock up its premium content known as TimesSelect was a terrible idea to begin with, and every piece of data that came out about it merely confirmed that the program was unpopular. Sure, the company drew a modest amount of revenue from it, but in exchange it severely limited the exposure of its top columnists, not to mention all of the foregone advertising revenue from the lower traffic. Now comes word that the paper is set to pull the plug on the offering (via Romenesko). At this point, it’s still just a rumor, but either way, the company has to arrive at this conclusion eventually. Newspaper publishers cling to the dream that one day all of their content will be safely behind paywalls and that readers will suddenly wake up with an allergy to money and favor this model. But the trend is only moving one direction, as there’s even talk about the Wall Street Journal, the one paper that’s had a moderate amount of success charging for access, making its content free.