Australian Newsagency Blog

A blog on issues affecting Australia's newsagents, media and small business generally.

Newspaper publishers fail to leverage the interest in stories with their paywall strategy

Mark Fletcher
December 21st, 2018 · No Comments

I get that publishers need to monetise content to pay for more content. I am happy to pay. If I like a song, I buy it. If I want to see an episode of a TV show, I buy it. However, I can’t buy a news story.

The paywall approach by news publishers is out of date. It was created for a time long gone. Today, stories matter far more than a masthead package.

Take this Herald Sun exclusive story from today. They want me to sign up to a subscription. The cost outweighs the benefit I see in accessing the story. So, I will wait to find out more about the story.

If, on the other hand, I could buy this story for a micro payment, they’d get me and, for sure, I’d probably join a micro payments service where I could nominate the types of stories I like and agree on rules for being served these single stories.

The price for a story could depend on the story itself, in a way similar to how some entertainment content is priced online.

Their demand that I sign up for an old-school subscription is so yesterday. It’s what they did when news on paper delivered to your door was a booming business. It is out of touch with today.

How, when, where and what we consume through subscription has changed. News publishers need to change to reflect this.

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Category: Media disruption · Newspapers

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