Newsday, the Long Island newspaper, is about to put a pay wall in place, according to The New York Times. And a spendy wall at that. The paper, owned by Cablevision, plans to charge $5 a week, or about $260 a year (Cablevision customers will get the subscription for free). The Wall Street Journal is $149 a year, by comparison.
Other papers in the paid content game include The Financial Times, The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette and The Albuquerque Journal.
Judy Shapiro, for one, ain’t buying it. The seasoned marketer who is now VP Paltalk, wrote earlier this week on Ad Age:
Content is really good at attracting audiences — but it’s not so great at directly generating revenue through gated-content subscriptions. Sorry, but you just need to get over it (unless you are the exception: The Wall Street Journal). Most people can get most content one way or another and circumventing the gated-content model is not that hard for users. Media companies trying to figure out how to plug all the naturally leaky ways content gets out there is like trying to win at whack-a-mole. Frustratingly unsatisfying.
Personally, I’d like to see many more publishers make this move to paid content. At the very least, it’ll give media pundits (and operators) some numbers and facts to work with.