I know drug dealers give our their goods for free to build up a customer base, secure in the knowledge that, once hooked, their clients will pay whatever is asked. That might even work for something like ice cream. I do not think it will work for newspapers:
Newsday appears poised to break from the newspaper pack with a plan by parent Cablevision Systems Corp. to end free content on the paper's Web site.
While specifics of the plan remain unclear, Cablevision chief operating officer Tom Rutledge - on a conference call Thursday - drew a link between declining newspaper fortunes in general and plans for Newsday in particular.
They won't buy your online material, and they probably won't go back to your print edition, either. Meanwhile, one newspaper out west has come up with the perfect solution for declining s:
DENVER (AP) — E.W. Scripps (SSP)says its Rocky Mountain News in Denver will close aftter publishing Friday's edition.
The company says its search for a buyer for Colorado's first newspaper was unsuccessful. The newspaper is closing just two months short of its 150th anniversary.
Scripps bought the News in 1926.
Scripps CEO Rich Boehne said in a statement that the newspaper is "a victim of changing times in our industry and huge economic challenges." Scripps says the paper lost $16 million last year.
What's scary to me is that the two newspapers had a joint operating agreement and neither of them was especially dominant. They each had circulations of 210,000 and some. But the Rocky Mountain News blinked, just because it lost a pittance. $16 million in one year? Come on, GM lost $9.6 billion in just one quarter. Buncha wimps.