With technology evolving so rapidly, news organizations are trying to find new ways to get readers to access their content. With apps and mobile websites, finding information is easier than ever. However, some news organizations like The New York Times require a subscription after you read a certain number of articles in a month. This raises the question of whether or not you should have to pay to access news.
Due to news being so accessible and free from many sites, newspapers and print publications have had to evolve with technology, but many are losing money from their traditional print papers. Subscriptions allow for newspapers and magazines to generate revenue that they may be losing from a decline in print purchases and print advertising.
To give you a little insight into why some news organizations charge you, take a look below. I recently did a case study on how digital media has affected The New York Times and here are five are the most important things it proved.
- Their digital subscribers have been steadily increasing since 2011 when they first introduced digital subscriptions.
- More people than ever are accessing their digital content but only a fraction of those people subscribe to The New York Times. To put it in to perspective, The New York Times had 2 million subscribers in 2015 and over 60 million people (from the U.S.) accessed their digital content that same year. (That’s 58 million people accessing content for free.)
- Overall, the company’s advertising revenue is decreasing. The total advertising revenue is made up of print and digital advertising. Their digital advertising, which makes up only 1/3 of the total revenue, is increasing while their print advertising continues to decrease.
- Total revenue for the newspaper has been decreasing since 2006.
- Digital media has conclusively increased The New York Times’ circulation as it has been increasing since 2010.
Basically, The New York Times is losing money and struggling to hook in many of the people that read their online content.
Personally, I subscribe to The Times because of the quality of the journalism. In comparison to other free online publications like People or Huffington Post, I find writing in The Times to be of a higher quality.
However, some people can’t afford the extra money to pay for news so free publications might interest them more. Also the content published can affect whether or not someone pays for news. If you’re a fan of celebrity gossip then a free online site, like TMZ or Perez Hilton, might interest you more than a traditional paper.
Do you subscribe to an online newspaper or magazine? Do you think you should have to pay?
*Feature photo originally posted on Instagram by @n_garegan