June 28, 2009

An experiement bound to fail

Dipping all their limbs and torso in the water of an unknown future, one US newspaper has taken behavioral economics to heart:
"The Daily News will now charge $145 annually to a newspaper subscriber, $245 if a subscriber wants the paper and access to the paper’s web site—and, here’s the key figure, $345 if the subscriber only wants the web site. Yes, you’re reading correctly; this means someone has to pay an extra $100 not to get the newspaper."
Perhaps years ago this would have worked a treat. Back in the day, when the Internet was a novelty and Google was a secret shared only by those 'in the know'. Back when web sites were rudimentary, unsophisticated. Back then, people would have paid to get their news online.

Now, not so much.

There's no compulsion for any of us to pay for breaking news from a particular source, local or multinational, when that same news can be had for free from half a million other sites.

News is no longer exclusive. It might not be deep or investigative, but it's ubiquitous ... and free.

Rupert Murdoch and others are becoming more vocal in their attempts to soften up the public to accepting paying for online news within the next five years or so. A futile endeavor.

The future is already here and traditional behavioral economics won't save them.

News is everywhere. All it takes is two minutes setting up a Twitter account and someone investing one minute to type no more than 140 characters. News is now one of the cheapest commodities in the world. A gross distortion of its true value, for sure, but there it is.

Can behavioral economics save newspapers?

1 comment:

  1. Pay for the leftist construct that is MSM "news"?