Shenron (7 May, 2009)
I'm not an expert but found this quite remarkable:
Murdoch: Web sites to charge for content - CNN.com
I doubt it will happen as planned. Once most newspapers start charging for all or most of their online content, who will pay for it? As I see it, many if not most people will look for free alternatives which could create opportunities for small webmasters like us.
I think the newspapers will have a hard time monetizing their sites and will have to be very inventive to stay profitable.
Shenron (7 May, 2009)
Never under estimate anything Murdoch works on, because his track record shows that he knows how to make billions of dolllars every year
He would not make this statement, without him having a game plan, and he has the WSJ to act as the feeder so my take is he will make it work for sure
Interesting read. I don't think this idea will take off for at least another 20-30 years. People like sitting down with a real newspaper rather than reading on a screen. Once the older generations start to die off and there is a younger (and more technologically aware) majority of people is when I think this will have potential.
Government policies are pushing up the price of wood and paper. Recent elections have seen more socialist governments seated, so we're sure to see that trend increase. If nothing else does, eventually this will kill off newspapers.
Of course, at the same time, the socialists are planning taxpayer-funded bailout packages for failing newspapers.
Murdoch owns the Wall Street Journal. That's one of the few newspapers with a profitable online subscription service, because it's one of the few newspapers worth paying for.
The vast majority of newspapers aren't worth reading, much less paying for.
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The Amazon reader is supposed to help in this regard. They have just launched a bigger version of the reader and some newspaper executives are hoping people will download news stories on to it and read it in their leisure.
Its no surprise newspapers are struggling as so many people catch their news online these days. But the real trouble for them is that competition on the net is so much greater than it is in print. I mean when I want to read news I am more likely to go to the news section on the bbc.com first and then, say, the online version of The Times if I want more in depth stories. There are so many news sites out there. But it is organisations like the BBC that have really benefitted from the shift from print to the Internet.
Also, lot of people search for stories on Google, so it the luck of the draw which of these newspaepr sites have better rankings for a particular story.
Another thing is, just because you are a big newspaper brand, does not mean you will attract the big ad spend from corporations because the internet is much more competitive as there are so many sites out there that may be a better suite for the advertiser in terms of targetting their ads. Wouldn't it make more sense for an apparel company to advertise on major fashion sites than newpaper sites even though it previously made more sense to advertise in print in the newspapers? So, they definately have to fight harder for the ad dollar these days.
It is a fact that printed newspaper subscriptions are declining globally. Personally, I prefer reading from paper over screen but there's no need to keep those papers artificially alive and up to this point paper doesn't keep up with the latest news.
Twitter is implementing live search ( Twitter Search to dive deeper, rank results | Webware - CNET ) and there might be a joint venture with Google later which might make it more difficult for many online newspapers. On the other hand I guess there will always be a market for established newspapers like WSJ to provide in depth and not up to the minute news online and offline.
News is global, newspapers largely followed a local marketing model. This was doomed to failure. The Wall Street Journal and U.S.A. Today were two of the very few exceptions.
When I was living in the U.S., I was still more likely to read news on the Internet from a non-local news source than I was to read news in print from one of Denver's weak also-ran newspapers: The Denver News or the Rocky Mountain Post. The quality just wasn't there.
News is global. I am a hundred times more likely to buy a copy of The Economist (a British magazine) than an American publication in the same niche. News quality is far more important than it's source.