Saturday, May 26, 2012

Do you pay for access to your online local newspaper?

Pay $6.95 to access the Augusta Chronicle online content? No thanks. The Augusta Chronicle allows "passers by" to visit what they deem as "Premium Content" up to 15 pages before seeing one of the prompts displayed in the image below.

I gave up the printed version of the Augusta Chronicle years ago. I use the online version to check out some local headlines but gave up reading it online after my last move in and out of Augusta because the comments demonstrated the need for commenting workshops, from the negativity of the commenters to those who type as they speak. The Augusta Chronicle is mentioned in PEJ's State of the News Media 2012 as they initially offered 100 page views at no cost to today's count of 15 free page views.
I will stick with WRDW, WJBF, and WAGT for my free local and Alltop for surrounding news feeds. I will occasionally view the Augusta Chronicle reporters on Google+ or Twitter but I will not pay $6.95 per month or $83.40 per year for what the AC deems as premium content. In addition to the price, notice the warning, "This page has insecure content".

Call me spoiled, but if I pay I do not expect to see the page has "insecure content" nor do I want to see ads. But as one commenter posted in the AC Publisher's article: Chronicle offers new ways to serve you in January 2011, "Only the ignorant will fail to see the value in the minimal charges" is yet another reason the holier than thou attitude will get you nowhere in Augusta. It is why people continue to get their Masters Tournament coverage from the national sources, vice the local premium content managers.

Augusta Chronicle did their research, but I opted for Pew's State of the News Media 2010, State of the Newpapers 2012, Pew's Project for Excellence in Journalism Summary of Newspapers and Charts and Tables that Internet users can access with no additional fees.

If the Augusta Chronicle offered content that mattered to me, provided relevant information for my educational journey, presented content that was secure, and displayed no advertisements, I might contemplate a fee based access. But I pay for my education and my Internet service, where I can access information from sources more credible, plausible, and verisimilar.

The Augusta Chronicle offers an app for Android, iPad, and iPhone/iPod Touch currently, "Free for a limited time". Do you pay for access to your local newspaper online information?
Comments, recommendations +1s, and reaction check boxes are always appreciated.
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