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January 27, 2010

Newsday Learns the High Cost of Charging for Content

Filed under: Newspapers — Laurie Morrow, Ph.D. @ 4:56 am
Tags: , , , , , ,

John Koblin of the New York Observer reports that, in October 2009, Long Island Newsday decided to start charging non-subscribers $5 a week to read Newsday online.  Three months later, according to publisher Terry Jiminez, exactly 35 people have taken Newsday up on this offer.  According to Koblin,

The web site redesign and relaunch cost the Dolans $4 million, according to Mr. Jimenez. With those 35 people, they’ve grossed about $9,000.

In that time, without question, web traffic has begun to plummet, and, certainly, advertising will follow as well.

Jimenez defended this jaw-droppingly poor performance, insisting that the website was not intended to generate revenue.

If not generating revenue was Jimenez’ goal, he certainly achieved it.  How not generating revenue is a good business tactic, may escape cruder minds.

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