In accordance with a current study, we’re not overly impressed with Rupert Murdoch’s plans to charge for usage of his online news sites. Of 2,000 people asked if they would ever pay for online news, 9 out of 10 said ‘No!’ ;.Does that show that Murdoch’s decision to charge users to gain access to his news sites is foolish?
I wouldn’t pay for news, either, unless…
If I were asked ‘can you ever pay for online news?’, I would probably say ‘no’, too. In the end, in an age when we can usually learn about major events on Twitter before any of the news channels report them, why would we ever want pay for access to their content?
However, I would, and often do, pay for quality and ‘luxury’ news. I could not pay a dollar for among the shrinking quantity of free newspapers passed out on my solution to work in a day, but I would pay for a Sunday broadsheet with all its extras and trimmings (even although the odds of me actually reading greater than a few pages are incredibly small).
I have also been known to join a paid members’ area on the website of a certain football team (which shall remain nameless) to access extra content not available on the key website: video interviews and press conferences, highlights of reserve and youth team matches, live radio commentary on match days.
Would I pay to see The Sun online? No. naija news There are usually no more than 2 paragraphs in each image-dominated article anyway. It only costs a couple of pennies to get the genuine article so there wouldn’t be much value in using its site. The Times? Maybe, but only when other quality news outlets starting charging, otherwise I’d just go for the free one.
Utilizing a Credit Card for a 20p Article?
I’m uncertain just how much Mr Murdoch wants to charge his users to see articles, but I’m guessing there will be some kind of account that needs setting up. I certainly couldn’t be bothered to obtain my wallet out every time I needed to see something and I would be very hesitant to commit to subscribing.
On the other hand, if they’d an identical system to iTunes, whereby you just enter your password to access a paid article and your card is billed accordingly, which may make much more sense. But, if I’d to achieve that for each major news provider, it would become very tiresome.
Ultimately, they could be shooting themselves in the foot for some extent. If the website helps it be harder and less convenient for me to see articles, I’ll probably go elsewhere. I would assume that I would always be able to read the news for free on the BBC’s website, which will not be good news for the advertising revenue of the Murdoch online empire.
Let’s assume that I actually wanted to see articles on a paid site so badly that I handed over my credit card details in their mind, what might stop me ‘reporting’ about what the article said on my freely available blog? I would imagine it would be very hard for a newspaper group to stop 1000s of bloggers disseminating the data freely to their users who would gain plenty of traffic in the process.
Recipe for Success?
The success or failure of paid news is in the strategy used to charge and engage with users, let’s assume that the users value the information highly enough to deem it worth paying for. The jury is certainly still on the whole concept and the odds are that lots of will attempt and fail before a profitable system is developed. Until then, we’ll have to wait and see.