This week, The Vancouver Sun and other CanWest network newspapers converted to an online subscription model. I just don’t get it. When I was in university, I learned that newspapers make their money by selling audience share to advertisers. What is The Sunthinking?
Now maybe I’m cheap. But I’m not alone. EContentMag published a lengthy diatribe about consumers’ lack of willingness to pay for content.
But burning money died in the sock puppet crash of 2000. Online Journalism Review offers mixed predictions for CanWest’s pay for content scheme. But I still can’t see it working. Why would I pay for CanWest’s articles when I can click away to another site or, better yet, see the real-time news coverage on a Global TV station? Consumers might pay for added value, but why would they fork over hard-earned cash for repackaged web content? Only time will tell.