Skip to comments.Rupert Murdoch to charge for access to Times and Sunday Times online
Posted on 03/27/2010 12:22:33 AM PDT by bruinbirdman
Murdoch has decided to block the 20m online readers of The Times from accessing the paper free of charge on the internet.
From June, anyone wanting to read The Times or The Sunday Times online will have to pay £1 a day or £2 a week for the privilege. Those who subscribe to the printed edition will be able to access the papers planned thetimes.co.uk and thesundaytimes.co.uk websites as part of their subscription.
Analysts warned that The Times risks losing almost all of its online readers when it erects the so-called pay walls.
Rebekah Brooks, a former editor of The Sun and chief executive of News International, the British subsidiary of Mr Murdochs News Corp, said the move was a crucial step towards making the business of news an economically exciting proposition. She said The Sun and The News of the World, News Internationals two other British newspapers, will also introduce charging for online access.
Mr Murdoch, who has accused Google of stealing his newspapers stories and revenue, plans to introduce online charges for all of his newspapers.
James Harding, editor of The Times, agreed that the paper is going to lose a lot of passing traffic, but said charging is less of a risk than just throwing away our journalism and giving it away for free.
Claire Enders, head of Enders Analysis, said Mr Murdoch is living in dreamland if he believes many Times readers will pay for access. They may get 100,000 regular readers to sign up, but its not going to be millions, and its going to take years, she said.
Times Online, the newspapers current website, had 20.4m unique visitors in February. Ms Enders estimated that the website collects about £15m to £18m a year from online advertising, which would drop massively
(Excerpt) Read more at telegraph.co.uk ...
Rupert Murdoch in for a world of financial hurt in this arena ping!
This makes no sense.
Newspapers always made their money with advertising. The charge for the paper itself was no more than enough to cover the actual printing and delivery costs.
The costs associated with hosting the online content are miniscule compared to the paper version’s printing and delivery costs, and the content has already been paid for — it’s the same content they created for the paper version.
Yet, they don’t think the additional advertising revenue online will cover the online hosting costs ?
Google has made BILLIONS from advertising—and when most people who use Google are asked about it, their response is, “Google has ads?”
A big mistake by Murdoch.
This is like being taxed twice. Don’t we already pay to view the internet? Why would we want to do it twice?
Murdoch is charging for the web page not the internet access.
I'm registered at The Times in order to comment. I also subscribe to their news alerts (no cost).
Last Friday, The Times sent me an E-Mail inviting me to preview their "exciting, stunning, new TimesOnline format rollout". The preview required a login. After all the hype, the final click of the mouse connected to NOTHING.
We would still be paying twice. Are you going to pay twice for the newspaper or magazine you buy?
It works for the Wall Street Journal.
I think this may be Rupert’s rosebud moment...God love him.
"It works for the Wall Street Journal. "
I subscribe to the WSJ print edition. The full content of WSJOnline in not included in my subscription. Murdoch will only give a 50% discount.
I gave up my print this year after a lot of years. I found myself reading online 90% of the time.
Time will tell whether it works or not, but I applaud him for the effort.
I wonder if his Islamic Terrorist-supporting buddy Prince Alalweed bin-Talal told him to start charging for the online Times? Murdoch seems to be listening to his Hamas-funding, CAIR-funding terrorist buddy a lot recently.
WSJ = content worth paying for, IMO. I don’t currently subscribe in any form but if I saw a need and had the funds, WSJ would be on top of my list.
The WSJ tends to have content that is more relevant to the folks who can read and think.
The question then is...will you buy it?
If I want it badly enough to pay for it, yes.
But I don't expect the fruits of another's labor for free.
It’s too late, Rupert. There are a thousand ways to get the news without you.
Murdoch (and others) are trying to double dip on content - advertising plus subscriptions. The notion that “news” organizations are giving their “content” away for free is utterly ridiculous, they just don’t get all the revenues they used to get from the print, but that model has been dead and buried.
Trying to charge full price for “news” or content that is freely available everywhere else (albeit, possibly, in some other, “non-exclusive” form) is only going to drive majority of users away and will reflect in lower prices for advertising (paid per K/M eyeballs). That’s a death knell for Web-zines.
The WSJ / FT subscription model is not appropriate or viable for non-financial, non-business, general-purpose newspapers; also WSJ / FT have a much wealthier roster of subscribers and need in immediate news access which could cost them or make them multiples of subscription price.
BTW, WSJ site under Murdoch had become very bloated and much less responsive than in the past, and number of subscribers have left it or use it much less for that very reason.
I get my subscription fee back on coupons.
That’s about the only way they can “sell” subscriptions today; but if you think about it, they are actually “selling” you an advertisement form third parties which already have paid them for it...
Not that it’s a concern for most people - they are making a decision based on their own cost-benefit analysis, in this case value and convenience of coupons vs cost of subscription.
True, but not only from advertising: you received a newspaper only upon paying for subscription. Always. Since times immemorial.
"The costs associated with hosting the online content are miniscule compared to the paper versions printing and delivery costs, and the content has already been paid for its the same content they created for the paper version."
That's the problem: the content is NOT paid for by subscriptions any longer. Murdoch merely seeks to compensate for that drop. The issue is very simple: you read the newspaper, whether on your computer's screen or in print; you therefore pay for the content. Just like a book or anything else.
To whom and for what do you pay to "view the Internet?"
How is that?
“True, but not only from advertising: you received a newspaper only upon paying for subscription. Always. Since times immemorial.”
Wrong. The subscription price roughly covers the cost of the physical printing and delivery of the paper version. Providing the *content* was paid for ONLY by advertising. The online version brings in ADDITIONAL advertising revenue, yet is DOES NOT have anywhere near the printing and delivery costs.
What's wrong? You can name a newspaper (other than the throw-aways "community" publications) that was delivered to you without a prescription? Please do so.
"The subscription price roughly covers the cost of the physical printing and delivery of the paper version."
That WAS true until recently, and only APPROXIMATELY so. There was such approximate correspondence between sources of revenue and costs. You make it sound, however, as if the managers/owners targeted the prices towards such breakdown. That is profoundly false.
"Providing the *content* was paid for ONLY by advertising."
The premise is false, hence the conclusion (whatever it may be) is inconsequential. The whole debacle exists because advertising no longer offsets the costs of gathering content.
Your hectoring lone, by the way, make your departures from facts and logic all the more silly rather than accidental. Perhaps you should refrain from it.