Monday, August 31, 2009

Block paper to charge for on-line content

Breitbart is reporting that the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette will launch a members-only website and provide on-line content for a fee.

The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette said "PG+" would be a "members-only website with interactive features and exclusive content" available to subscribers for 36 dollars a year or for 3.99 dollars a month.

It said "PG+" would not replace, the newspaper's current website, but would feature "a new stream of exclusive blogs, videos, live chats and behind-the-scenes insights into the news of the day." will continue to provide its mix of content and would remain free, the newspaper said.

The Post-Gazette's move comes as newspapers across the United States grapple with a steep plunge in print advertising revenue, steadily declining circulation and the migration of readers to free news online.

The Post-Gazette is owned by Block Communications which also owns the Toledo Blade. Do you think they'll offer the same for the Blade - and would you pay?


Maggie Thurber said...

A friend read this post and sent me the following via email because he couldn't post it for some reason:

It is kind of funny how clueless they are - I hate their editorial stance and wouldn't give them a dime. People that are smart enough to recognize the bias won't pay for when they can get the same bias for free by turning on the evening news. Other folks that don't have disposable income won't use it, so the only folks will be their fellow leftists, and they won't want to pay for it with their own money..

Hooda Thunkit (Dave Zawodny) said...


I think that your friend is onto something...

We subscribe to the paper version for my wife's convenience/preference and I read the online (often delayed/tardy) version as a matter of choice.

I've tried their free, old samples of their so-called "green" version (they're trying to SELL this one for $11/28 days) and it is hideous.

I wouldn't spend penny one on it, as it is unworkable for me...

Tim Higgins said...

Regardless of whether we like it or not, every daily newspaper with a circulation of 100,000 (and many of the smaller ones) are going to go to a paid online format of some kind. The print editions are finally beginning their death spiral, and with ROP advertising (ads printed in the paper) and classified ads becoming almost non-existent, they have no choice if they are to survive.

Regardless of their editorial bias, there will be a place for these efforts in the market of ideas (and there should be). While no one in the industry has been able to predict the future of these efforts, or of newspapers in general, it is obvious that this is on the way to Toledo.

As for me ... Being old school, I still like the feel of newsprint and will hang onto it as long as I can. When its gone, I will mourn it for a spell before giving in to the online editions.

Maggie Thurber said...

Tim - I understand the comfort of paging through a newspaper, and do miss it sometimes.

I gladly pay for the Wall Street Journal on-line. I used to pay for the print edition, but the on-line fee was less, so it was a matter of cost that made my determination for me.

I'm sure there will be some who will think the exchange of their money for the content is a fair deal, whether it is a hard or electronic copy.

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