The New York Times Paywall:
Last week the New York Times went behind the paywall, this also means the death of the NY Times Book Review section. This poses many a question, not only to the literary world, but also the publishing industry as a whole: will a book review matter as much anymore? Will online newspapers all begin using this model?
Colleague and fellow blogger Mike Loomis had this to say about paid versus free content:
“Quick and interesting tidbit revolving around the launch of independent iPad-specific publications by Rupert Murdoch and Richard Branson; both know a thing or two about news media, and they post a ton for FREE through their web sites of Fox News and the Wall Street Journal.
But both of these, along with others, are banking on new media as a winning model for paid content. Oppenheimer recently predicted tablet sales will rise 66% per year, estimating tablet sales in 2014 to be 115 million units. Magazine content on tablets is expected to exceed $12 billion by 2010 according to MediaIDEAS.
Here’s the notable dynamic that stands out to me and can apply to you: people mainly associate the web with “free”, but they expect to pay for Apps. We’ll see how The New York Times fares with their new payment model.”
According to the Huffington Post article regarding the NY Times Book Review section, “The bright spot on the horizon is that the future of book reviewing, in the age of the Internet, will be nothing like what the Times has propagated over the years: reviewing in the imminent future should be more open-ended, interactive, democratic, transparent, authoritative, credible, opinionated, stylish, argumentative, deep, and controversial, or at least more so than the Times has ever shown any inclination to be…Now the field is more wide-open to experimentation; all sorts of possibilities offered by the new medium, from live interviews with authors to truly interactive reader response, will hopefully be utilized in the reviewing organs that will surely come on the horizon in the near future. The Times‘s book page steps back, to leave a much desirable vacuum. The vibrancy of books will ensure that the vacuum is honestly and rigorously filled.”
This IS good news!