With The New York Times‘s pay wall a year away and its details vague, there are many questions still left to be answered. What will this metered system really look like? What will it actually cost? Will it send bloggers to link to other news sources and deter readers and advertisers? Although they don’t have all the answers, media insiders have their opinions, so we went to them for feedback on the Times‘ announcement today. Read their thoughts below.
“This announcement is about a change of policy that is a year away — which is a lifetime in Internet years. The Huffington Post remains committed to the linked economy, and to building a sustainable business that gives our bloggers, editors, and reporters the widest possible audience for their work.”
Caroline Little, CEO North America of Guardian News & Media:
“If the Times begins to charge consumers for their content, I am sure they will do it in a way to maximize traffic from Google and the like. No doubt they will lose some of their readers, but they are most likely to be focusing on keeping their loyal readers, not the ones who come in and out of the site who don’t even know they are on the site. One word of caution: charging for content seems to be the new answer for a weakened industry but it’s not the silver bullet. It is going to take new revenue streams, continued reduction in costs and a strong ad market.”
Alan Meckler, CEO of WebMediaBrands:
“This is not a huge game changer. One can still see big parts of the Times for free. If you are a print subscriber you have total access. NYT will get extra revenues online without greatly hurting its online readership. I have to presume that should the 2011 test work well that the NYT might go further in 2012 by increasing charges and paid online use.”