Ramblings

by Mike Masnick




Why Charging For Newspaper Content Online Doesn't Make Sense

from the exactly dept

One of the arguments that shows up here repeatedly is on the backwardness of local newspapers charging for online content. There are a number of reasons why it's a bad idea - from the level of taking yourself out of the online discussion and believing that walled garden content can survive to misunderstanding the very basic economics of the internet. Still, many newspapers are trying to do so, and some even believe that it's going well. Along comes Vin Crosbie, who knows both the newspaper business and the online content world, to smack a little sense into them. The Albuquerque Journal explained why they thought they were brilliant for creating a "successful" operation charging for their online content, and Crosbie picks apart the argument, bit by bit, and explains how they're actually losing money on this plan - and how all their other examples of newspapers charging for online content are bad (or irrelevant) examples. If you're interested in the economics of online content, it's worth a read.

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  1. icon
    Mike (profile), 7 Nov 2003 @ 11:05am

    Re: Brand's Dictum

    Yeah. I agree that the full quote is much more useful.

    I've always tried to modify the quote myself, by saying that information, once created wants to be free. The real issue is in creating the information - and that's the expensive part. However, once the info has been created, the nature of it being infinitely reproduceable means that it moves towards being free, and there's little you can do to stop it.

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