News Corp. seeking to form online news consortium: LAT

August 21, 2009
News Corp. chief digital officer Jonathan Miller speaks with The Hollywood Reporter at The Waldorf Astoria in June 2009 in New York City. Media giant News Corp. is holding talks with other newspaper publishers on forming a consortium that would charge for news online and on portable devices, The Los Angeles Times reported on Friday.

Media giant News Corp. is holding talks with other newspaper publishers on forming a consortium that would charge for news online and on portable devices, The Los Angeles Times reported on Friday.

The newspaper said News Corp.'s chief digital officer, Jonathan Miller, is believed to have met with representatives of The Co., Co., Hearst Corp. and Tribune Co., publisher of The Los Angeles Times.

The Los Angeles Times report comes as newspapers across the United States grapple with a steep plunge in print advertising revenue, steadily declining circulation and the migration of readers to free news online.

News Corp. chairman said earlier this month he would begin charging readers of online versions of his newspapers in the coming year.

already charges for its website and claims it is the most successful paid news site on the Internet.

Other Murdoch papers include the New York Post, The Times of London, the Sun and The Australian, among others.

Journalism Online, a company launched in April which seeks to help news organizations make money on the Web, announced last week that more than 500 newspapers and magazines have agreed to join the venture as affliliates.

It said a payment platform would go online in the fall which would allow subscribers to access paid content at the websites of the affiliates using a universal Journalism Online account.

"The reality is that unless a lot of people who produce news act in unison to start charging for content, then individually they will fail," Alan Mutter, a former columnist and editor and consultant on new media ventures, told The Los Angeles Times.

Media analysts have been engaged in a fierce debate over whether readers will be willing to pay for news online after becoming accustomed for so many years to getting what they want for free.

(c) 2009 AFP

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not rated yet Aug 21, 2009
Sweet more money to News Corp and the sociopath Rupert Murdoch. Much more money to be made when you present the reality a multi billion dollar corporation would like you to believe as news. Do not trust these scumbags. Not much reality involved in the news lately. Maybe read the weather report or local news.
not rated yet Aug 21, 2009
I think the word they are looking for is "cartel", not "consortium".
not rated yet Aug 21, 2009
I'm old enough to remember getting my news from the hourly AM radio reports at the top of the hour, then coming home and watching the 6pm evening news. I know there were (are) commercials but it really wasn't that big of a deal or concern.

Does this mean I will now have to pay to find out about the latest Michael Jackson news or have to wait to hear an update on Michael Vick? --- NO Rupert, say it isn't so!

I will get along just fine Rupert, whether you choose to charge for content or not!

not rated yet Aug 22, 2009
How wonderful! We can stop trying to guess which writers are the people writing propaganda for their customers and hiding real 'truth' from the people. It'll be great to be rid of the crooks and we can keep up with REAL news while us poor folks can give out the details of what is going on in our neighborhood, gov., town, and state! GET OUT communist media!!
not rated yet Aug 22, 2009
Well, unless they plan on including EVERY news agency, large or small, corporate, independent, or citizen journalist in that list, and gain watertight exclusive right to press releases from every leading research company, university and private individual on the planet, I cannot see this working somehow.

The news that matters - ie not the celebrity 'gossip', will remain free, for the foreseeable future, just not with those institutions.

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