This morning, New York Times
Premium content can be a tricky thing in cyberspace. It's pretty much expected when it comes to financial-services content such as TheStreet.com
However, it gets to be more of a challenge for general news sites. Shares of Salon (OTC BB: SALN) have traded in the pennies for years as the company tries to gain traction with its subscription model despite its compelling collection of columnists.
It's easy to see why the publisher is going this route. Yesterday, media giants Knight Ridder
Unfortunately, it's also a naive strategy. Newspapers and broadcasters have been bellyaching about their ad sales for some time now. Meanwhile, Google
Yes, most of the nytimes.com site remains free. Its news and reviews will continue to be dispensed gratis by news aggregators like Google. However, the proprietary columns will draw thinner crowds online, and that will limit the viral splendor of a truly great piece making the rounds among connected friends (like Dan Barry's brilliantly written piece "The Corpse on Union Street" earlier this month).
New York Times is also including limited archive access for its new Times Select subscribers. That's something readers could have purchased piecemeal in the past, and it definitely adds value to those looking to dig up dated content. Yet with Internet-based advertising becoming so much more important with every passing news day, does the paper know what it may be giving up along the way to a model that looks good on paper?
Who would have thought that digital ink could smear?
Longtime Fool contributor Rick Munarriz thinks that Barry's column is the definitive piece on the tragedy in New Orleans. He does not own shares in any of the companies mentioned in this story. T he Fool has an ironclad disclosure policy. Rick is also part of the Rule Breakers newsletter research team, seeking out tomorrow's ultimate growth stocks a day early.