Techdirt reported today that the New York Times is considering charging to allow people access to their website. Really really bad idea. It seems that the newspaper, like many others, doesn’t know how to adapt its business model to the current information provision environment. Here’s an excerpt from Techdirt’s coverage.
We’ve already explained how the NYT is losing its relevance in the online world thanks to its registration system. The recently opened up old tech stories for free, rather than paid, so it’s odd that they would then quickly move to a full sub model right after becoming more free. Already, the fact that the Wall Street Journal is paid-only means that it’s lost its “must read” status among many influencers. Other newspapers that have gone to a paid model are discovering that the opportunity cost is tremendous. It’s about time that newspapers realized that they’re no longer in a broadcast business any more. The news goes beyond that, from incorporating the views of readers to customizing the news to letting readers help spread the news. Blocking yourself into a paid garden simply will guarantee that they’ll go away faster.
For more information, including a quote that shows just how out-of-the-loop the journal’s publisher is, check out Yahoo News.