48% of US Consumers will pay average of $3 for access to online news

November 16, 2009

http://www.nytimes.com/2009/11/16/business/media/16paywall.html

Not a bad sign for the newspaper industry.  $3 isn’t much, but it’s a starting point.

To make this work, the newspaper companies should form a consortium.  Access should include web and mobile.  Hopefully, there would be 500+ news sources.  The members of the consortium would share subscription and advertising revenue on an agreed upon pro rata basis.  Technical development would be a shared service.

The result would be the “cable network of news.”

I would keep the print business separated (i.e., newspaper subscription is separate).

From the New York Times article:

Americans, it turns out, are less willing than people in many other Western countries to pay for their online news, according to a new study by the Boston Consulting Group.

Among regular Internet users in the United States, 48 percent said in the survey, conducted in October, that they would pay to read news online, including on mobile devices. That result tied with Britain for the lowest figure among nine countries where Boston Consulting commissioned surveys. In several Western European countries, more than 60 percent said they would pay.

When asked how much they would pay, Americans averaged just $3 a month, tied with Australia for the lowest figure — and less than half the $7 average for Italians. The other countries included in the study were Germany, France, Spain, Norway and Finland.

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