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London Evening Standard Shoots Murdoch Paid Content Plan In The Foot, To Be Handed Out For Free

Tyler Durden's picture




 

As more and more traditional newspapers wake up to the threat posed by the new commoditized information paradigm, the generic response spearheaded by Rupert Murdoch has been to make information a premium product once again. The problem with that approach is that it implicitly takes head on instantaneous data dissemination and distribution platforms like Google and Twitter. Whether this is a fight that is sustainable is very much open to debate. One person who does not think so is Russian billionaire Alexander Lebedev who is taking a diametrically opposite route, and plans on cutting the price of his London Evening Standard newspaper to zero, coupled with an increase in circulation from 250,000 to 600,000.

Lebedev believes he can break even with the news approach in 12-18 months. What the response to this information "dumping" will be by the bigger and core players should be quite interesting. What will be troubling to them is if more MSM platforms follow in Lebedev's footsteps. Information, like money, has proven quite capable of following the "path of least resistance" and any attempts to gate it traditionally face rather dire consequences.

 

 

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Mon, 10/12/2009 - 14:22 | 96684 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

It's not a pearl bracelet. Those are Tibetan "mala" beads meant to emphasize the impermanence of all things...

Mon, 10/12/2009 - 14:42 | 96694 lizzy36
lizzy36's picture

good taste.

someone trained you well.

Mon, 10/12/2009 - 14:13 | 96678 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

"The problem with that approach is that it implicitly takes head on instantaneous data dissemination and distribution platforms like Google and Twitter. Whether this is a fight that is sustainable is very much open to debate"

I don't think there's much debate. The dinosaurs are just thrashing around in the tar.

Mon, 10/12/2009 - 14:42 | 96695 Gilgamesh
Gilgamesh's picture

Ahh, was wondering why LEE had pulled back to only up 20% on a daily basis and 700% YTD.  Sanity has returned.

Mon, 10/12/2009 - 14:58 | 96713 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Murdoch really is behind the curve here - personally I do not pay for the kind of product he has to offer.

Given the internet a lot of his empire is rapidly becoming obsolete.

Mon, 10/12/2009 - 14:59 | 96715 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Murdoch really is behind the curve here - personally I do not pay for the kind of product he has to offer.

Given the internet a lot of his empire is rapidly becoming obsolete.

Mon, 10/12/2009 - 15:00 | 96717 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Murdoch and guys like him will never understand. They rose to power by being gatekeepers and simply cannot accept that the paradigm has changed. Of well. Such is life.

Mon, 10/12/2009 - 15:03 | 96719 hp12c
hp12c's picture

Murdoch thinks his paper is worth a premium? I just got a renewal notice for the print edition ( I have a woodstove and it burns great for kindling) : a 100% increase from last year from $200 to $400! They did the same for the online version- used to be $49 for the WJS & Barrons..

Adios Ruppert... I get more / better info free from the WEB (like this site)...with the $$ saved I guess I'll buy some ZH T-shirts...

Mon, 10/12/2009 - 15:36 | 96747 ShankyS
ShankyS's picture

Rupert is gonna put up a good fight and show his ass in the process. Note to Rupert - SELL now bro or get crushed but the free infomation train.

Mon, 10/12/2009 - 16:02 | 96776 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Murdoch really is behind the curve here - personally I do not pay for the kind of product he has to offer.

Given the internet a lot of his empire is rapidly becoming obsolete.

Mon, 10/12/2009 - 18:22 | 96929 Gordon_Gekko
Gordon_Gekko's picture

True. I have stopped watching television altogether - in fact, I don't think I have watched television in all of 2009 (except, perhaps - and ironically - on the web). I get my news, entertainment etc. etc. everything right here on the internet.

Mon, 10/12/2009 - 17:11 | 96842 morphizm
morphizm's picture

This plus buying MySpace and bankrolling the delusional mentals at Fox News will come back to deliver a swift kick to Murdoch's crotch. I can't believe he thinks pay walls will work, especially when his content is already bought and sold.

Mon, 10/12/2009 - 17:15 | 96847 BorisTheBlade
BorisTheBlade's picture

I have a paid subscription for FT and WSJ, but since recently spend much more time reading economic blogs like Zerohedge and watching stuff on Youtube than reading something I already paid for. Actually, most of the time I don't need any paid subscription to get the information I need as the proportion of exclusive materials even for the best newspapers is not as high to pay for it. Internet is a bitch.

Mon, 10/12/2009 - 18:19 | 96927 Gordon_Gekko
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Dude, you can get all WSJ articles for free by googling the headlines.

Tue, 10/13/2009 - 07:05 | 97360 BorisTheBlade
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You're right, one less reason to renew the subscription.

Mon, 10/12/2009 - 17:56 | 96903 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

So murdoch went the popularist route of providing worthless news to the masses, and they lapped it up and he built an empire out of it. All well and good when it's free, but who is going to pay for that crap? Most of which you can't trust to be objective anymore.

Mon, 10/12/2009 - 18:17 | 96924 Gordon_Gekko
Gordon_Gekko's picture

I will celebrate when NYTimes, WaPo and WSJ (among others) all bite the dust. Sayonara MSM.

Mon, 10/12/2009 - 19:44 | 97008 hp12c
hp12c's picture

+1 Gordon on the NYT... I will pop a cork to say a good bye to Krugman and his keynesian "solutions" editorials

They have been very carefull to  make sure they bless everything the current administration does... theywould not want to miss out any any bailout funding that will be forthcoming to these dinosaurs

Mon, 10/12/2009 - 22:15 | 97186 Anonymous
Anonymous's picture

Lebedev again talks rubbish about how he is "socially repsonsibility minded". Ha ha. He's investigative journalism's saviour.

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