Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Page 3, 5¢, ka-ching

Foreigner Mr Rupey Murdoch has told us that we may well have to pay to read his newspapers. If he does, Fairfax will soon follow. Daily I at least skim through their papers, The Age and the Herald Sun. Usually the Sydney Morning Herald and Sydney Daily Telegraph along with other newspapers at times.

The last time I paid for anything on the net was 1996 for a pass to sites called Mancheck. You can guess for what. It worked for long after the period paid for expired. It was easy to deviously get around the net back then. Such places are much smarter now and I leave it to the experts to pass such stuff on to me.

However, I would pay to read newspapers online, up to a point. Given we are used to being able to read newspapers all over the world for free, and have been for a long time, the price would need to be very low with multiple options. Given I still buy normal newspapers regularly, although not daily, I would object to double paying. Maybe everyone will get their news from ABC online. As a non commercial government owned organisation, they really complicate matters.

No doubt there are many minds puzzling over how to charge online newspaper readers without alienating them. I don't know how they will do it. Do you?


  1. Anonymous4:11 pm

    Stopped buying so called newspapers ages ago.......get my info from the net or abc news.

    No way would I pay to read any daily or weekly rag on line. Same with music and movies these days all are able to be downloaded for free.

    No Foxtel for me either - tv programs are also downloaded for free.

    Gotta luv technology.

  2. just read in glossy mag TATLER about Mr Murdoch on his daughters yacht playing cards with BONO the Irish popstar as they cruised the Riviera.
    Somebody must support this lifestyle.

  3. nuh, i won't pay to read the news online. I'll listen to the radio more if it's important, or find a free site.

  4. I think they (specifically Fairfax, Murdoch is a no brainer) have already made the decision and are easing readers into the idea. I came to this conclusion yesterday when an article popped up in the breaking news section on The Age yesterday. The headline was something along the lines of "Fairfax investigating methods for charging for online news".

    As for how it could work, I think there will be a few options. From what I have read I gather that some articles will still be free to entice the readers on to the site and get them to pay for the other stuff.

    The main way would be through periodical subscriptions, unlimited viewing, just like getting the paper delivered every morning. Then there could be more be "casual" plans, like a few cents per article,or a days worth of viewing for $1 etc. Charged through paypal or something like that.

    Of course businesses schools and libraries could take out a multi user subscription.

    It could work and I don't think the cost will be any more than buying a paper, but paying for stuff we get for free now completely sucks.

  5. Anonymous7:47 pm

    Why would anyone bother with Murdoch publications? - the "Sun Herald" you skim through if its free while you have a coffee at the shops. Get the "Age" on Thurs (green guide) and Sat and Sunday - they have periodic special deals so cost is minimal. The "Weekend Australian" has got better, still a bit right wing, but less blatantly in the past. Get it on occassion, but not regularly.

    Dont read the news in the paper, read the letters and opinion pieces. its stale by the time it gets to press. ABC, SBS, BBC online - theres plenty of free choice.

    Yesterday, Fairfax announced a loss of $384 million - the "rivers of gold" of the classifieds is rapidly drying up, so they must be (all of em) worried how to make a living...


  6. No pangs of conscience about movies,tv or movies Anon?

    MS, not sure about you, but I am just jealous.

    Fenz, I think you are a good representative of Ms General Population.

    Paying does rather suck Ben. They must be working on added value.

    Michael, what I worry about, and it has already started to happen, is that there aren't funds for investigative journalism.

  7. It all ends up lining the cocky cage.

  8. Or for cleaning shoes on Jayne. Used to have a lot more uses.

  9. There's always the Huffington Post! It's free!

  10. Argh Ian. Don't start that up again.

  11. ooh I dunno Andrew, i'm pretty special ;) (there's buses for people like me)

  12. I get a daily newspaper delivered here early morning along with a local one three days a week. I look forward to reading it with a cup of tea...thats just how i like doing it...


Democracy is all very well, but why give it to the people? - Audrey Forbes-Hamilton.