Fox announced today that it would start to charge users for content on its Internet News sites. Can Fox make this work?
I find this pretty hard to believe. I'm a pretty avid internet user and the thought of paying for content really just does not sit with me. For example. I often visit ESPN and the Wall Street Journal. Both these sites have sections for paid content. Despite the fact that I often go there and I sometimes want to see the stories they have for paid subscribers, I honestly do not feel that compelled to pay for their sites. Why? Because there is so much other content available elsewhere that is often just as good.
In this day and age all I have to do is search on Google and I most likely will find another similar story for free. At worse, I probably will find a blog somewhere that talks about the content of the story. As I tend to be a skimmer of news anyway, that is all I want, so it works out for me.
We have a whole generation of people who cannot even imagine paying for content any more. I am not saying that all content should be free. Far from it. I actually think it might have been better if content was never free. But the genie was let out of the bottle a long time ago and it is going to be pretty hard to put back in.
Somehow Murdoch thinks if he does this, and can make money, it will force all media outlets to do the same, thus eliminating the problem of free content. Yeah, fat chance of that happening. I can pretty much promise you that if this even came close to reality, and it will not, there would be someone who finds a way to get users this content for free. Look at what happens every time the music industry tries to shut down a sharing technology. Another one takes its place.
Does anyone here actually pay for news content?