Putting up the paywall has seen the Times lose the odd blogger along the way, but what about writers who are still commissioned, but make their content available elsewhere?
Wanting to link to his work in a post, without directing his users to a paywall, he posts the full review as he submitted it to the paper.
As an experiment, I’ve pasted the text I filed to the Times at the foot of this post. You can read it for free as long as the Times doesn’t object.
Let’s be clear why I doing this test. I’m not against charging for editorial content, just as I’m not against paying cash for a printed paper. Copyright belongs to the paper since the review was commissioned and submitted normally.
But, he adds, this should not apply to the “unbundled” journalism.
While a newspaper has a legal right to restrict access to all of that material as one whole bundle, this can’t be the best way to go in the future. If charging is going to be part of the survival of quality journalism, something more flexible and agile is required. Digital technology allows journalism which was packaged together in print to be “unbundled”. Once unbundled, it can be copied, distributed, swapped, commented on and its message can multiply.
But Belam is curious as to what the Times will have to say.
One wonders what that will do to his chances of future commissions from the paper.