Feeds

New York Times and Murdoch gunning for more clicks

Gray lady lifts her skirts

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

The trend towards coughing up free online news continued apace yesterday following the New York Times's decision to drop charges on its website.

Rupert Murdoch also waded into the debate, perhaps looking to grab a few column inches and clicks for the Wall Street Journal which will fall into the News Corp boss's lap once his $5bn takeover of Dow Jones has completed.

The Times said it had changed its stance from offering an online subscription-based news service to allowing readers access to its entire website from today after spotting an opportunity to raise revenue through advertising.

The newspaper said that its paid-for website, which launched two years ago, had drawn 227,000 paying subscribers at an annual cost of $49.95 that pulled in $10m a year in revenue.

However, compared to the growth of online advertising, the Times senior VP and general manager of the site Vivian L. Schiller said "our projections for growth on that paid subscriber base were low".

The newspaper added that many readers had linked to the site via search engines such as Google and Yahoo! but had then been blocked from gaining further access by the "pay wall".

Explaining the rationale behind its decision, the Times also quoted figures from media watcher Nielsen/NetRatings which reckoned the newspaper has 13 million unique visitors each month.

According to the Financial Times, whose own online offering charges readers wanting access to select material on its website, Murdoch said that dropping charges on the WSJ site was "right on the front burner" of his plans for the online edition.

The media tycoon added that while cutting out its subscription service could see a short-term revenue loss of about $30m, he reckoned that opening up the WSJ site by using the online advertising business model would generate a much larger readership. Um, perhaps he's been reading El Reg. ®

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

More from The Register

next story
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
Driving with an Apple Watch could land you with a £100 FINE
Bad news for tech-addicted fanbois behind the wheel
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Radio hams can encrypt, in emergencies, says Ofcom
Consultation promises new spectrum and hints at relaxed licence conditions
Special pleading against mass surveillance won't help anyone
Protecting journalists alone won't protect their sources
Big Content Australia just blew a big hole in its credibility
AHEDA's research on average content prices did not expose methodology, so appears less than rigourous
Vodafone to buy 140 Phones 4u stores from stricken retailer
887 jobs 'preserved' in the process, says administrator PwC
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.