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WP: Washington Post to start charging 9.99 per month online


ixcuincle

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http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2013/06/05/its-paywall-time/

 

 

Well, not so much a “paywall” as a “paymeter.” You can read 20 articles a month for free. According to traffic data, most of you don’t read 20 articles a month. (Side note: What’s wrong with you?)

 

And even some of you who read those 20 articles and more will be exempt. “Students, teachers, school administrators, government employees and military personnel who sign on from their schools or workplaces” will still get free access. And if you come in through a Facebook or Twitter link, it doesn’t count toward your 20 articles. I imagine there will turn out to be some other backdoors, as well. But otherwise, it’s $9.99 a month.
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Good for them.  They need to find some vehicle to pay for the reporting.  The opened Pandora's Box will make it tough on them.  We've been conditioned to expect everything on the internet to be free and people by and large have lost all respect for the value of intellectual property (look at how many pirate music, pics, etc. and don't even bother justifying it).

 

The only problem with it is the overly apologetic way they are going about this and how loudly they are telling people how they can get around it.  I think people want robust newsrooms and actual reporting... I don't think they want to pay for it, but I think they want it.

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Every newspaper does paywall now, which is a real shame. I remember when you could read the papers online for free. I had RSS feeds of the NY Times and their food section, and I would read about various types of food. Then, they went paywall, so I just switched to the LA Times. Then LA Times went paywall, so I switched to Yahoo / Eater / Zagat. 

 

I used to be a big Post fan. I would bring the Post to school, and when bringing the full pages was too cumbersome, only the sports section. I grew up with the Post, but when the online revolution started I started to read the NY Times and LA Times more often than the Post. The Post really hasn't been the same since they let go of Kornheiser. 

 

The newspapers, sadly, are a dying industry, and they have no choice but to do this. That only means I'll take my business elsewhere. 

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[ quote=ixcuincle]That only means I'll take my business elsewhere. 

 

Not losing much business if you're not willing to spend a dime.  Not picking on you, I think most feel this way.  I think it is a problem that is rooted in the beginning of the internet.  If newspapers in the 80's had said... give us 2 bucks a month and you can read the post anywhere in the world you want... I think that would have been the prevailing model, but once you get used to getting stuff for free... then that is what the expectation is and even a nominal charge feels like highway robbery.

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leaves me out, i would have no intrest even if was a buck a month

 

For sports i was reading the Examiner. For headlines I was reading AP . I made myself a news webpage and it has all my favorite newspapers/magazines rss feeds so i just click and read

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For many people (like me), there is so much free information on the internet, a newspaper isn't needed.

 

There is very little on the Post's sports page that I can't get somewhere else for free.  There are some Redskins related twitter feeds that blow the Post out of the water.

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Well, I'll do one or two things.  Start back with more paper newspaper which would be cheaper or find other sites that are free.  If and when the internet starts to cost more than my monthly fee with my internet company is when I find other things to do. Not paying to surf the internet any more than I do with my monthly internet cost.

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I think it was only a matter of time. I'm surprised the Post held out this long before charging for online. Considering that it's still free for 20 articles a month, that's not bad. And if you follow the Post on Twitter, it's still free to read articles they post from there. So I don't think it's going to be as big of an issue as some think.

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I do read the post online for the sports section only... many more than 20 articles a month. I will not be paying for it since similar content is free elsewhere, but they have to make money, just like any other business.

 

I suppose you could just follow the reporters Twitter feed and when they link a new story, just click from there and it will be at no cost...

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Yeah I probably read 20 articles a week on WaPo but it's not worth $10 a month for me. Not sure why they aren't able to generate enough ad-based revenue to prevent having to charge. I also HIGHLY doubt they'll make enough money with the subscription fees to stay afloat.

 

also, I need to read more apparently. I still have access to my .edu email account, and I almost exclusively read articles that beat writers have posted on twitter. So I'm good.

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I assume that you're exempt if you subscribe to home delivery of the paper copy. 

 

(For younger folks who may not understand the previous sentence, a "paper copy" means that all the articles are printed with ink on a bundle of cheap paper that is then delivered by a "newspaper carrier" each morning deep into the bushes near your front door.)

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I do wonder where we'll be in 10 years.

 

Is amateur reporting good enough for most people?  Will the pendulum at some point swing back the other way?  Will some newspapers become grant-funded?

 

 

I agree, not sure there is a good answer.  It is scary stuff, really.  The uneducated, untrained, and unwise all have a microphone and are more than willing to shout as loud as they can for free.  Look at the Ron Paul crowd for exhibit A

 

State funded newspapers?  No thanks to that, either.

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Hmmm, this doesn't seem too bad. The NYT has a paywall, but I rarely have problems reading their articles anyway.

It would be bad if it ends up like some news sites like FT or WSJ which are pretty much impossible to read.

Luckily there isn't much of interest to me from them usually.

No way am I going to start paying money to every site that has an interesting or informative article I want to read.

And I generally go through like 20 articles or so a day minimum.

(although I think we do get the Washington Post delivered to us anyway, but not daily)

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Those newspapaer website paywalls are pretty easy to bypass, even for someone with little or no computer knowledge. 

 

Some sites use a pop up window that blocks the content (window cannot be moved) and will return you to the main page if you don't accept some form of payment/confirmation of existing account.  For those ones, the pop up window is the last thing that loads, so simply hit the stop button (X) before the window pops up and you can read the artcicle with no issues at all.  The only issue I have ever had with that is sometimes when there is more than 1 photo with the article or a slideshow, only the first photo displays and the slideshow will not work.

 

As for the 20 a month limit sites, I havent had much success finding a way around those, but I really haven't had to since the only sites that I visit that have those type of paywalls also have other news outlets as partners so I jsut go to those sites and can read 20 articles from the same source. 

 

I don't know if the Washington Post has any partners or agreements with other newspapers, but more than likely it will be a smaller city's paper-close to Washington- that might get national or Washington area news from the WaPo, and only use their reporters for local stories. 

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This is the problem with technology.  While it's great that we can get so much more than we ever did, it's just another bill to tack on to the rising amount of bills.  Think about it.  25 years ago, you didn't have a cell phone bill, internet bill or satellite bill.  Most people had cable, but some to this day still use the rabbit ears or whatever replaced them.  I'd give up the internet and cell phone before I give up my satellite TV. 

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I do wonder where we'll be in 10 years.

 

Is amateur reporting good enough for most people?  Will the pendulum at some point swing back the other way?  Will some newspapers become grant-funded?

 

who knows, I bet before cable people thought you would never pay for TV, and before Satellite radio the same thing ... 

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