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Pay-for-view News Sites & Their Online Impact.

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posted on Jan, 20 2010 @ 03:18 PM
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The New York Times announced Wednesday that it intended to charge frequent readers for access to its Web site, a step being debated across the industry that nearly every major newspaper has so far feared to take.

www.nytimes.com...



It won't happen to the NYT until 2011, but if it becomes normal for all news sites across the net, what impact will it have regarding the control of information (ie: no-one would buy access to multiple news websites) and what effect will this have on websites like ATS which depends heavily on the use of links and external content?




posted on Jan, 20 2010 @ 03:25 PM
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reply to post by masqua
 


Doesn't the WSJ already charge for premium access? I don't believe this is much of a threat to online speech. If a news corporation has quality news that readers find worthy of paying for they will. On the other hand if the news reported is poor the news corporation will fail.

Often I find news from many organizations biased and lacking. That is exactly why I get my news from here and other online sources. If an online source want me to pay for it I will rely on other sources. The independent reports of youtube are an excellent source of news. Citizen videos are proving to be more accurate and unbaised than anything the main stream media spoon feeds us.



posted on Jan, 20 2010 @ 03:44 PM
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Originally posted by Flakey
That is exactly why I get my news from here and other online sources. If an online source want me to pay for it I will rely on other sources. The independent reports of youtube are an excellent source of news. Citizen videos are proving to be more accurate and unbaised than anything the main stream media spoon feeds us.


Good point. I also enjoy the reporting of alternative news sites and the public commentary on social sites such as this one.

For ATS (et al) the problem lies in the access to external content and links.

As more and more of the primary news gathering engines, such as the web sites of major newspapers, become inaccessable other than through subscriptions, I'm suggesting that alternative news sites and social commentary sites will have less and less information to draw from.

There's nothing wrong with Youtube, etc., as a means to distribute information, but if organised reporting such as is now available through major newspapers is strangled by subscriptions, a Canadian, for instance, might have to choose between the Toronto Star or the Globe and Mail. One is liberal, the other conservative.

The same could be said of America, where the public, if they want online news sources, will have to pick either the LA Times, The NYT or the Washington Post.

I'm sure the same applies in all countries.

If, and I'm only suggesting 'if' the path the NYT is taking becomes the norm, then I suggest it will further the political divide that already exists.

As well, it would lessen the amount of information freely available now.



posted on Jan, 20 2010 @ 04:01 PM
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reply to post by masqua
 
A lot of news sites are going to go behind a pay-wall. Murdoch has been complaining about Google linking to The Times...if he paywalls that, he'll do the same to all his news outlets. Their politics aren't mine so I won't miss any op-eds.

I think their business model is struggling to keep up with the internet and they're looking at all the ad revenue generated by search engines with resentment. As the recession combines with the lack of paper sales they start to count numbers they perceive they're missing out on.

BBC is my No.1 and there's no danger of paywalling that! Least not in the UK. The Daily Mail should follow the trend...it'll keep a certain strain of poisonous paranoia away from the rest of us.



posted on Jan, 20 2010 @ 04:16 PM
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Originally posted by KandinskyA lot of news sites are going to go behind a pay-wall. Murdoch has been complaining about Google linking to The Times...if he paywalls that, he'll do the same to all his news outlets. Their politics aren't mine so I won't miss any op-eds.


But... but... how will you know what's being said behind that 'paywall'? (nice term, btw
) You might not miss the slanted op-eds, but you'll miss out on their general news reporting and Reuters feeds too. No question the NYT is a huge news-gathering machine that's read worldwide.


I think their business model is struggling to keep up with the internet and they're looking at all the ad revenue generated by search engines with resentment. As the recession combines with the lack of paper sales they start to count numbers they perceive they're missing out on.


Yeah. They covered the reasons for doing it in the story linked above. They'd like to combine the waning dollars from ad revenue (understandable) and bolster it with subscriptions. Also, it's not that occasional surfers won't have some access next year. They will. I'm more concerned about where all this is heading over the next 5 years.


BBC is my No.1 and there's no danger of paywalling that! Least not in the UK. The Daily Mail should follow the trend...it'll keep a certain strain of poisonous paranoia away from the rest of us.


snake bite

Good to hear some sites will retain free access, much like the CBC here in Canada. However, aren't these sites (CBC & BBC) more like an extension of governments in that they are partially funded by them? If that was all that was freely available...

Anyways, case in point; this thread which began with a link and content from the NYT would not be happening if that story could only be accessed through a subscription AND how would the NYT react to me linking and c/p'ing that content online?

sp

[edit on 20/1/10 by masqua]



posted on Jan, 20 2010 @ 04:30 PM
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Kandisky summed up my thoughts on the subject quite well. Murdoch is also threatening to remove all NewsCorp material from Google and have it exclusively on Bing.

They missed the boat. I said this on the last modcast we did. They saw the internet going in one direction and it went in the opposite. I see this as nothing more than another way to control the flow of information on the web. Their particular business model is dead or darn close to it. The physical newspaper, although it may never be completely extinct, will became a rare sight in the next 10-20 years. They thought the idea of User Generated Content was nothing more than a fad and that blogs and sites like ours would be a faded memory by the mid 2000's.

I also remember reading that the AP (maybe) was looking into charging for the right to reproduce their material anywhere on the net, such as here. I believe that they stopped or stalled this due to Fair Use laws though my recollection of the story is fuzzy.

I am going to try and find the stats on the declining numbers of physical newspaper subscriptions. I know it has plummeted over the last 2 decades but I don't know the exact numbers. That more than anything, imo, is why they are going to try and implement this policy, at the NYT and elsewhere. My thoughts are that it won't succeed and only further deteriorate an already in trouble business sector.



posted on Jan, 20 2010 @ 04:56 PM
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reply to post by GAOTU789
 


Frightening.

All the more reason for sites such as this to develop a cadre of reporters on our own because it sure seems like printed and distributed newspapers are almost extinct.

That their online, free services are in trouble because of those lagging pulp sales is a no-brainer, really. The only printed news I buy regularly contain very local news only... like who's cat got lost and which neighbour just passed away at the ripe old age of 96.

What you've said only reinforces my opinion that links to, and content from external news sources may become scarce.



posted on Jan, 20 2010 @ 05:16 PM
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Newspapers, Hollywood, TV, BookPublishers, the Music Industry - they are all way behind on how society works nowdays. So I too am not too worried about the Internet not having enough free content.

Truth be told, I wouldnt mind paying for special creative efforts or expertise. If we quit paying for anything, people are going to quit working and we'll run out of movies, music, articles, books.



posted on Jan, 20 2010 @ 05:30 PM
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reply to post by masqua
 


I wonder why/if it would even make much of a difference? Many news stories are just regurgitated from the AP and that wouldn't be blocked. The information will still be readily available. Only thing that may happen is these publications would further push subscribers/customers away because of free alternatives... yes/no?

[edit on 20-1-2010 by LadySkadi]



posted on Jan, 20 2010 @ 05:37 PM
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Originally posted by Skyfloating
If we quit paying for anything, people are going to quit working and we'll run out of movies, music, articles, books.


Good point. I'd hate that.


There's this one nagging thought, though. It is nice, for instance to be able to freely read both sides of the political spectrum on news sites.

IF the trend continues towards those sites beig 'pay-walled', how does a voter get the comprehensive picture of the field running for office? Liberals will buy into liberal sites and vice-versa for conservatives.

That there will be sites like this which has a membership consisting of the full spectrum (left/center/right) is hopeful, in that their opinions can be read, but if the links and external content isn't available, then only unsubstantiated opinions remain.

(and that's just politics)



posted on Jan, 20 2010 @ 06:02 PM
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The last desperate play of of a business which failed to adapt. We've seen the same with the big music companies and movie studios. People wanted content and the internet provided it. People instinctively look many places for information - I don't know anyone who only uses only one news site exclusively.

Some will pay for content but most of us will simply source it somewhere else. While a newspaper owns it's content, it doesn't own the news. It would only take one subscriber to write what's reported on a blog to let the news out from behind the paywall.

Ultimately, news sites who take this approach are peddling from their established name. Given a dwindling subscription base, those names will loose their vigour and eventually run themselves into the ground.



posted on Jan, 20 2010 @ 06:10 PM
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Here's a a thread I started on the subject a while back with a couple of vids:

Rupert Murdoch and his Old World Order

They're delusional if they believe it will work.



posted on Jan, 20 2010 @ 06:19 PM
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Originally posted by masqua
IF the trend continues towards those sites beig 'pay-walled', how does a voter get the comprehensive picture of the field running for office? Liberals will buy into liberal sites and vice-versa for conservatives.


People going to places that confirm their beliefs and buddying up with like-minded is already common. What is also common - and it is so annoying to intelligent folk - is certain newspapers and magzines and TV Stations being associated with either left or right and none presenting the full spectrum (such as this site).

Of Course you're right that it might get even more extreme in the years to come - until maybe someday people realize its boring to get ones own views confirmed all the time.



posted on Jan, 20 2010 @ 06:37 PM
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Since the Obama administration is hellbent on the destruction of the capitalist free market system, this is a good opportunity for them to nationalize the news media and regulate it... In fact they should begin working on legislation for this move as soon as possible. No American should ever have to pay for news when the government can provide it for free... Of course those able to pay should be forced to purchase a public news option, or pay a news tax. This would solve numerous problems in the news industry and help the economy, also provides better controls over biased news reporting through stricter regulations of content. Assurance of reliable news and information for all Americans.





posted on Jan, 21 2010 @ 01:48 AM
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I've been following it on slashdot for months (mailing list & member) and they've posted several discussions in the past twy weeks. Today's is Half of Google News Users Browse But Don't Click. I'm off to work, but the link's worth reading. Same old thing nobody RTFA



posted on Jan, 21 2010 @ 02:42 AM
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Originally posted by masqua
But... but... how will you know what's being said behind that 'paywall'? You might not miss the slanted op-eds, but you'll miss out on their general news reporting and Reuters feeds too.

Buy the newspapers. That's what you did before you had the internet.

Nobody has a right to free information and creative content; no matter what people used to say in the first flush of internet enthusiasm, information doesn't 'want' to be free. Information doesn't want anything.

If you want 'free' news, watch television--and pay through your nose in time wasted watching commercials and programme announcements, attendant annoyance and the shoddy, dumbed-down product that passes for 'news' on television.

No free lunches. And that's just the way it should be. If you want something, that means you value it. Which means, in turn, that you should pay for it.

As for the future of conspiracy theorizing, the world could do with a great deal less of it. It would clean up the internet a bit, too. All good news.



posted on Jan, 21 2010 @ 05:20 AM
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I don't think it will work as a business model. I mean, I know I sure as heck wouldn't pay for online news when I already get the newspaper and have a TV, and I'd bet most people are the same way.

If the 'paywalls' really did take over, then I guess we'd have to rely on scanned newspapers, youtube videos and blogs/articles by regular people, the few free websites that would remain, and people screenshotting or quoting things they paid to see being the paywalls for others to view. Unfortunately for ATS, several of those options would violate copyright laws.



posted on Jan, 21 2010 @ 03:00 PM
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I'm no business student or economics guru, however the pay wall model seems a bad move for MSM newspapers/news sites. It can and does work for niche news sites like New Scientist, Nature etc.

The history of major news businesses has been intrinsically linked with the big political parties of all nations. It's often symbiotic. The old press barons have courted the politicians and vice versa. Political power is the currency they all value and seek to develop. Popularity is the requirement for both to gain political power and the message is spread by the media. It's still dependent on a readership/public that subscribes (in general) to the politics of the particular newspaper...right wing versus left wing press etc.

The paywall model would appeal to a limited market share that represents a narrower political view. For example, The Times subscribers willing to pay already share the political view of the editors i.e. conservative, capitalist, free market etc. I wonder where they would be able to expand their political influence in the general public? If the political power was thus limited, they wouldn't attract the politicians to the same degree.

With limited market share, dwindling political influence and a static consumer base...the paywall model could ultimately be stagnation. Shareholder repellent. Data mining and ad-revenue would then be a short-term profit incentive, but finite.

If any of this is vaguely accurate, they need to look at different ways of monetizing the current open access model.



posted on Jan, 21 2010 @ 10:51 PM
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reply to post by Kandinsky
 


I may be reading something into your post that wasn't there, but it suddenly occurred to me while reading your post that propaganda is pretty useless if it isn't freely available! The whole point of propaganda is to get it to as many people as possible and to have them believe it, and paywalls are not going to fit that model.



posted on Jan, 22 2010 @ 05:26 PM
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We'll just have to start putting articles up on P2P sites. They can't stop the spread of info.



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