Would you pay to read the New York Times online?
There were rumors floating around earlier this week that the paper was close to making this move.
Few papers have successfully managed to pull of a paywall. The Wall Street Journal charges for access, but that paper reaches a niche audience with the kind of business reporting that's hard to find anywhere else. The New York Times may be "the paper of record" in the United States, but it's not exactly the only place to go to find out what's happening in the world, the US, or even New York City. It should be interesting to see whether the paper can convince enough people to pay for content to turn a profit this way.
That said, there's good news for casual, occasional New York Times readers. The paper is taking a metered approach. You'll be able to read a set number of articles each month without paying a cent. Once you go past your monthly allotment of free articles, you'll have to pony up some cash to keep reading.
It's not yet clear how many free articles you'll be allowed to read, but I like the idea of a freemium model. It gives readers a chance to see what they're missing and decide whether it's worth paying for full access.
What do you think? Would you be willing to pay to read the New York times? Or would you just look elsewhere for your news? You know, if every other news source on the face of the earth hasn't decided to start charging for content by 2011. With the Times leading, there's a decent chance that others will follow.