Two subsidiaries of communications group WPP are working on a new paid content project, scheduled for launch early next year. Reports the Wall:
The idea behind the Content Project is that users pay a fixed fee each month, giving them an electronic wallet, to access a pool of content. The fee is then shared out between the media owners rather than paying one fee to a single company.
Rupert Murdoch is bullish about the role that the iPad and tablet computers will play in the future of publishing and journalism. According to a report by the Australian, Murdoch told an industry event this week in Sydney that tablet computers were “a perfect platform for our content”.
Murdoch added that subscriber levels to the newly paywalled Times website were “strong”:
It’s going to be a success. Subscriber levels are strong. We are witnessing the start of a new business model for the internet. The argument that information wants to be free is only said by those who want it for free.
The Times has done the same with columnists from the paper writing and blogging about their support for paid content. But interesting space on Comment is Free on Sunday was given over to some-time Guardian writer and comedian David Mitchell, who took the title’s strategy to task:
By implying that it thinks content should be free for moral reasons, the Guardian website is playing an extremely dangerous game. It’s an approach which not only makes it hypocritical to charge for the printed newspaper and the iPhone app, but also gives hostages to fortune: what if the Murdoch paywall, or some other “micropayment” system, starts to work? Are we to believe that the Guardian wouldn’t institute something similar? Or would it be happy to be reduced to the online equivalent of a freesheet?
Journalism.co.uk was given a talk through of the new site designs by their editorial teams last night, so we’ll be posting more details later, but for now see the homepages below or visit the siteswhich you can read about at this link.
The Financial Times is working with Foursquare to provide free subscriptions to users of the location-based social networking site who “check in” to selected locations, Business Insider reports.
The deal will target younger readers, for example by featuring coffee shops and other spots located close to universities and business schools, who may be turned off by the rates for a premium subscription to FT.com.
[T]he Foursquare deal opens the FT up beyond their typical straight-laced business subscribers, and attempts to get a decidedly younger, more web-savvy potential consumer interacting with their brand.