A memo from the top brass at the New York Times was sent to employees about the plan to charge for online content at nytimes.com…
Today we are announcing that we will be introducing a paid model for NYTimes.com at the beginning of 2011…we have chosen a metered approach that will offer users free access to a set number of articles per month and then charge users once they exceed that number.
(Read the full memo here)
There is no doubt that there will have to be a paid model for online news. Journalism is not free. But what’s the revenue solution for online news consumption? Hard to tell.
But I do know that penalizing your best and most frequent users is not the answer.
While I can see their plan is to try to have their cake and eat it too — I think it would work better in reverse. Give it to the power users. Those influencers would spread the links, ideas, etc to occassional users who would pay.