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Will you pay to read news online?
Media mogul Rupert Murdoch says that News Corp will start charging for online access to its newspapers within the next year.
August 6, 2009 2:49 by Aarti Nagraj
“The digital revolution has not made content free,” said Rupert Murdoch. The chairman of News Corp was announcing plans to begin charging readers to access the online editions of all his newspapers and television channels, a move expected to take place within the next 12 months.
“An industry that gives away its content is cannibalizing its ability to do good reporting,” Murdoch said. “Our policy is to win and we will make our content better and differentiate it from other people. If we’re successful, we’ll be followed by other media.”
He made the announcement as News Corp declared a $203 million loss for the fourth quarter of the fiscal year ended June 30, with revenues during the period dropping around 11 percent. The loss was largely due to a $680 million write-down on its MySpace business. During the same period last year News Corp made a profit of $1.1 billion.
For the full financial year, the company made a net loss of $3.38 billion, compared to a profit of $5.4 billion in the previous year.
While Murdoch has not yet given any indication how much online users will be charged, the European online edition of The Wall Street Journal (owned by News Corp’s Dow Jones unit) currently charges $1.99 per week for some of its content.
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