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Only seven percent of Americans would pay for online news

Released today, a new report from Pew Internet elucidates just how unwilling we are to pay for online news. In the State of the News Media 2010 report, Pew finds that while 71% of Internet users read their news online only 7% of all users would pay for the privilege. To put things into perspective, the report also notes that the total online advertising revenue dropped for the first time since 2002.

The report has some other goodies: most of us browse multiple sites without bias, but a full 35% have a 'favourite site' -- with 65% of those with favourites checking in at least twice a day to check for updates. Most telling, however, is that only 19% of those with favourite news sites would pay for content. That's what passes for loyalty today, eh?

I don't think the report tells us anything particularly groundbreaking, but it's always nice to have numbers that back up the overarching societal sentiment. Basically, don't block ads on sites that you like -- and even then, the jury is still out on whether ad revenue is a long-term solution.

Starting January 2011 the New York Times will bring forth its pay wall. The media industry collectively holds its breath.


Tags: media, news, online, pay wall, PayWall, pew, publishing, report