My old friend Andy Fraser happened to be over in Germany last week when he dropped me an email on our whole POD print concept. He found in a newsagent over there that they are already providing POD for the international editions of our favourite papers. And you know, I have myself experienced these POD papers when staying in Europe a few weeks back.
When sitting down for breakfast I picked up a copy of the New York Times global edition. This must of been printed locally and delivered to this and probably 100 other hotels around the area. The one thing that struck me as odd and pleasing in the same breath was the lack of advertising in this paper, other than a few scattered ads for subscribing to the global edition and then just one…. yes ONE paid advert for a watch. The following morning unfortunately someone else had got to the NY Times before me, so I picked up The Independent International Edition and sure enough the Brits had fully cashed in on the advertising with a total of 22 ads in the 48 pages of the paper. And we’re not talking about little classified ads here, we’re talking full page or half page in your face ads. So being that I found this a little intrusive with my breakfast, I proceeded to lookup the subscription price for The Independant and since it is clearly being supported by advertising, I was expecting a pretty low rate. But no… £894!! for the Monday to Sunday editions…. Well cotton my wee little socks, not only are they taking that daily advertising revenue, but to obtain the copy you are paying a big subscription fee (lets work that out…. emm oh over £2.40 a paper, thats over 5p a page since the edition I read only had 48 pages…..)
So, the hotel (or me if I subscribed) would have paid out all that money, to be forced to read untargeted UK based advertising (not that useful when you are in Germany knowing that you can get your tomatoes half price at Sainsbury’s that day) and filled with news that has been editorially altered to be shorter for a smaller paper!
Is there a Cognitive Mismatch Between Newspaper Execs And Newspaper Readers? I’ve been following the article on TechDirt with the same title and adding my own comments, but it actually brings me back to my own A Possible Future For Newsprint series where if you are paying for the content, why not choose the content you want to read.
Author: Gary George
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