This is a newspaper with a premium paywall now

Man stumbles on 49,000-year-old aboriginal shelter after getting caught shot in the outback

Yep, on the actual page too:

Man stumbles on 49,000-year-old aboriginal shelter after getting caught shot in the outback

34 thoughts on “This is a newspaper with a premium paywall now”

  1. Reads like they’re drawing their interns from the same pool as the Daily Mail: dinosaurs (extinct 65mybp succeeded by megafauna 40kybp).

  2. *lip curls, mutters ‘told you so’*.

    That’s now the Telegraph and the Graun in mortal danger. Both still have too many people on the payoll, in the case of the G hundreds and hundreds too many.

    Problem for the T is that paywalls only work when there is something worth reading on the other side. Obits can still be OK, Matt is good and James Kirkup is insightful on politics, but that’s it. So much for it being the greatest newspaper in the world just a few years ago under Conrad Black and Charlie Moore. The Barclay twins really have done it in. Shame on them.

  3. That must have been painful.

    And while I am no snob –since when did national supposed non-tabloids use expressions like “caught short”? Even were they spelled correctly.

    The Marching Morons indeed.

  4. The story has been up on science web sites for several days (since I read it) or several months.
    The local colour about searching for the dunnee was added by another newspaper. In fact they were searching for ancient archaeological sites.
    Telegraph copies the story then wants you to pay to read it again.
    Some business plan.

  5. The leftward drift has apparently been put in place to appeal to a younger ‘demographic’, because the traditional readership – retired colonels and their flower-arranging wives – is dying off. That tells you something (a) about the indoctrinating sewer that is the state-run education system and (b) the idiots in charge at the Telegraph, since young people are unlikely ever to buy a copy or subscribe, or read it even if free.

    Till yesterday I had it bookmarked on my Android tablet (which I run sans cookies) because I could glance at it for nothing. Quite often I would look at the home page and reject everything there. Now even the bookmark and, for me, the whole enterprise has disappeared into the cyberhole.

  6. Even ignoring the spelling mistake, what happened afterward – did he hold it in or just go round the corner? Enquiring minds want to know.

    As a member of the invasion class in Australia (my ancestors were English 3 to 5 generations ago, roughly, as far as I can be bothered to work out) I’d like to know what the protocol is in these situations. Just in case I’m in the position of potentially shitting all over my ancestors.

    Stewards of the land my arse.

  7. Till yesterday I had it bookmarked on my Android tablet (which I run sans cookies) because I could glance at it for nothing. Quite often I would look at the home page and reject everything there. Now even the bookmark and, for me, the whole enterprise has disappeared into the cyberhole.

    The Hellograph is still in my feed reader, but will probably be replaced by the Wail before long. Can’t read the Times, won’t touch the grauniad, not sure if there are any other serious choices.

  8. you can access a certain number of articles in the DT each week for free.

    You can (could) access as many as you like for free, if you don’t allow their cookies. No idea if this also applies to the new premium (sic) section.

  9. @BIW

    > you can (could) access as many as you like for free

    Still begs the question of why one would bother. Used to buy a couple of copies a week and the Saturday, but gave up when I worked out how much I just wasn’t interested in.

    Now I just cough for a digital subscription to the Economist. Though they have turned remoaner and it’s proving very taxing…

  10. Well, somehow they have to pay for the industrial numbers of whining professional feminists they’ve recently hired.

  11. Shame on you Steve Crook, shame on you. You’re no better than a Telegraph sub. Go look up ‘begs the question’.

  12. I said years ago, when newspapers shifted to the Web, that someone needed to set up a common micropayments system. A lot of people these days want to read a bit from here, a bit from there; one brilliant article from a particular source but not the entire bloody lot. So what is needed is a simple way of clicking to read an article for 5p or 20p or whatever. Have the account sitting in the background of your browser so there’s no irritating constant inputting of passwords and so on. That would be brilliant, and lucrative for the papers. It would also give them a clear signal of which of their content was worth reading and which should be ditched.

    I was actually quite surprised Murdoch didn’t do this when he started talking about paywalls, as whoever created the system first would have been in a position to take a small cut from their competitors. Ah, well.

  13. @Jack.

    Congratulations of fulfilling your pedantic urge, correct or otherwise. If you feel an urge to fart, it’s always best to let it out. At least that’s what Claudius was advised to do, and who are we to argue?

  14. Shame on you further, Steve Crook, for not taking your scolding like a man, you pathetic little Economist-reading weasel.

  15. I said years ago, when newspapers shifted to the Web, that someone needed to set up a common micropayments system.

    Lots of people did, and they were all wrong I’m afraid. No one likes it. The theory goes (and has done for 20 years or so) that micropayments impose too much of a cognitive load – you have to keep track in your head, effectively, of how much you’ve spent and how much this one next article is going to cost you. Monthly subscriptions are an easy, thought free way to do I want this, this I don’t care about o much.

    Same applies to pay per view – only works for one off, major events only. Which is why Netflix are subscription too. Exactly the same as any profitable news provider.

    Look up Clay Shirky for more reasons why the micropayment model simply does not work.

  16. Unlimited ‘what we have’ beats 1c/article (or SMS, or phone call for that matter). This has been played out in the market a long time ago. People will pay a premium for certainty and peace of mind.

  17. Just remember this:

    “Journalist” is just another name for a guy who woke up one morning during his junior year of college and finally realized at 2.5 GPA in Poli Sci wasn’t going to get him into law school.

  18. If anyone has registered with the DT, could they post a “Premium” url link here, and for the full registered article (ie not the “half content” teaser url we can all click on as unregistered)?

    It would be interesting to see what the mechanism is to stop people accessing it, once we have a (protected) link to click on?

  19. You do us freelances too much honour Dennis. I got a “third” wich is the lowest pass which is still an honours degree.

  20. Timmy –

    I don’t count legitimate freelance writers as “journalists”. To me, you are a writer and commentator.

    Journalists to me are the sort of overeducated narcissistic dim bulbs that latch onto a large corporate news operation to avoid starvation (or a career in retail).

    If I ever call you a journalist, it will because you’ve said something that pissed me off.

  21. Ltw,

    > Lots of people did

    Maybe they set up some small-scale experiments, but I was reading loads of different newspapers on the Web every day at the time, so I was very much the target market, and I never heard of any. If they didn’t manage to do anything whose marketing reached me, they didn’t try very hard.

    And one of the major players such as Murdoch doing it would have been a different order of thing.

  22. Furthermore…

    > Unlimited ‘what we have’ beats 1c/article (or SMS, or phone call for that matter). This has been played out in the market a long time ago. People will pay a premium for certainty and peace of mind.

    Well, personally, I’m not about to pay for any subscriptions, as every bloody one of them involves paying loads extra so I can get lots of shit I don’t want to read. I would happily pay micropayments per article. As ever, I’m not that weird, so I assume there are other people like me. So why the choice? Why not both? If some people prefer subscription and others prefer micropayments, take both their money. That’s price segmentation 101.

    I will add that there are plenty of examples of people paying for some output when they don’t want all output. The music industry’s customers’ switch of focus from albums to singles over the last decade, for instance.

  23. S2,

    The list of people who would prefer micro payments includes me.

    I do see one major problem though. Far too often I read an article and feel I’ve wasted my time. Wasting money as well doesn’t appeal to me. Ideally I’d like a system that allows me to rate the article once I’m done and can accurately judge the quality of the content. Payments would be based on if I actually valued what I read. Most consumers would end up just saying everything is crap so they get it for free though.

  24. I worded that badly S2 – “lots of people did” was in response to “I said years ago”. What I meant was “lots of people said the same”. I’m not aware of any micropayment for content style system ever being put into practice.

    The entire idea is impractical to start with. Who handles the billing? Do you give your credit card details to every separate business so they can charge you a penny per click? Ok, let us imagine some central clearing house that manages all that. That would be what I like to call a cartel, but never mind.

    Now you have the problem of making a decision every time you press a button. People say they want that, but what they really mean is ‘I think I’ll be really discerning and save money’. Back in reality, their immediate reaction will be to shy away.

    The reality is we have a micropayments system already called advertising. Various content providers compete on how much or how little they annoy your eyeballs. Those with sufficient desirability are moving to subscription, because, well, they can. The concept of direct tiny payments for reading was never much more than a wet dream of publishers. It’s the journalism equivalent of the Tobin tax – they won’t even notice, money from nowhere!

  25. Bloke in Costa Rica

    The Telegraph might have been able to weather the transition to a paid model if it hadn’t spent the last three years fucking its brand into a coma. Now we are presented with the uncompelling proposition of paying actual cash money to read what Mary Riddell has to say for herself.

  26. S2,

    The problem with newspapers is that the “newspaper” doesn’t really make sense in a digital form. It was a way of bundling news when moving information around was expensive. It made sense to stick a bunch of things together as it was cheaper to produce and distribute in large volumes.

    I’m not going to spend £7/week just to read a couple of columns I like in the Times. I can buy a couple of books for that on Kindle.

    But, £8/month to read the Jancis Robinson site which includes writing by her, other writers, tasting notes, reviews, events and so forth is not far out of reach. If I start drinking more fine wine soon, I’ll do it.

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