Feeds

Murdoch’s Oz hacks to get special paywall discount

Get your News at half price

The essential guide to IT transformation

The News Limited paywall experiment in Australia which started on Monday has received a less-than-rapturous welcome among its journalists, who are being asked to pay to access the site.

If New Matilda is correct, hacks at Holt Street found an e-mail in their in-box offering them accounts at half the price charged to the rest of the world.

If successful, getting all of the company’s staff to shell out would probably double the paywall’s subscriber numbers at a stroke.

Unless, of course, the staff can be bothered to use Google find the content for them. On Wednesday, an Austech Forums post showed that stories paywalled via direct access were fully-indexed by Google.

In other words, a story’s headline is enough to get at a non-paywalled version - something which got attention under the "paywall hacked" headline over the last couple of days.

News has denied that this is a bug, saying instead that it’s an intentional setting that exists to allow some level of story-sharing on social networks. Reasonably enough, News director of corporate communications told AdNews that someone going to such lengths to access content probably isn’t ever going to subscribe anyhow, and that going through a multi-step process to access a story is a fairly onerous way to read more than one or two stories.

It may, however, be useful for News journalists offended by being asked, any time they’re away from the office, to pay to read their own stuff. ®

Update: News Limited has contacted The Register to state that its journalists will have free access: "No staff on The Australian will be asked to 'pay to read their own stuff.' All staff on The Australian will get the cost of a subscription reimbursed," the spokesperson wrote.

"You have confused staff on The Australian with other News Limited staff, who are entitled to the 50% discount." ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
6 Obvious Reasons Why Facebook Will Ban This Article (Thank God)
Clampdown on clickbait ... and El Reg is OK with this
Banking apps: Handy, can grab all your money... and RIDDLED with coding flaws
Yep, that one place you'd hoped you wouldn't find 'em
No, thank you. I will not code for the Caliphate
Some assignments, even the Bongster decline must
Barnes & Noble: Swallow a Samsung Nook tablet, please ... pretty please
Novelslab finally on sale with ($199 - $20) price tag
Video of US journalist 'beheading' pulled from social media
Yanked footage featured British-accented attacker and US journo James Foley
Primetime precrime? Minority Report TV series 'being developed'
I have to know. I have to find out what happened to my life
Broadband slow and expensive? Blame Telstra says CloudFlare
Won't peer, will gouge for Internet transit
Netflix swallows yet another bitter pill, inks peering deal with TWC
Net neutrality crusader once again pays up for priority access
prev story

Whitepapers

Best practices for enterprise data
Discussing how technology providers have innovated in order to solve new challenges, creating a new framework for enterprise data.
Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Advanced data protection for your virtualized environments
Find a natural fit for optimizing protection for the often resource-constrained data protection process found in virtual environments.
How modern custom applications can spur business growth
Learn how to create, deploy and manage custom applications without consuming or expanding the need for scarce, expensive IT resources.
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?