Would You Pay For News?

I asked my kids this question last week. And I got three different answers.

One of my kids said “Absolutely. I do pay for several news apps and I like them a lot.”

One of my kids said “It depends on the user interface. I really like Pocket and do most of my news reading in that app.”

And one of my kids said “No way. News should be free. I get all of the news I need online for free.”

I have asked a number of other millennials this question this past week and got a similar set of responses.

The “no way” answer was stronger with the men. The “absolutely” answer was stronger with the women.

The answer that interests me the most is the user interface issue. I like to read in a mobile browser on my phone. I can follow links most easily that way. And I can share links most easily that way. And reading news is, for me, an interactive and social experience. I really like sharing links and getting shared links. So I want a least common denominator user experience that most easily facilitates that.

But I know a lot of people who use “read later” apps like Pocket and Instapaper. Clearly the user experience question looms large in the news business.

And there is also the question of what is news. Almost everyone told me that they value “long form news content” but not “headlines.” And so it is not surprising that we see news organizations like The New York Times and Washington Post investing more in long form content.

I am curious how the AVC community thinks about paying for news.


Comments (Archived):

  1. awaldstein

    I do today through subscriptions to NY Times and WSJ.The value of long-form and nuanced thought and writing in a world where moments and utterances are commoditized and platformed is increasing exponentially.Marketing is again lagging behind this especially in the content world with concepts like growth hacking, the masters of headlines, so painfully misguided.

  2. William Mougayar

    There was a recent comprehensive study about How Millennials Get for Content, and What They Pay for. http://www.mediainsight.org…It turns out Millennials are more likely to pay for entertainment than for news, i.e. movies, video games and music were much higher ranked than digital news.

    1. Anne Libby

      Lol, I am too. #notamillenial

  3. Conrad Leonard

    I would and do pay for news online (NYT, Economist), for two reasons. First is about the stuff that I get now: “free” means “paid for per-click”, and that means what I get on free news sites is the most clickable and not the most important stuff. Second is about the stuff I get later: if no-one pays for good reportage, no good reportage gets done. Simple!

  4. JimHirshfield

    Paying for Pocket isn’t paying for news; it’s actually the opposite.

  5. William Mougayar

    I am no Millennial, but I’m a news junkie, and would pay for a good news filtering service that gave me a combination of:1) known areas of interests (by keyword & easy to add/remove keywords as interests change) 2) what my friends and competitors are reading 3) serendipitous finds that I should be interested in4) across all media- news, reports, video, podcasts5) delivered to my Inbox twice a day 6) archived so I can search7) ability to save and share everythingTwitter is so close to the above, yet so far in packaging it.Feedly has some elements, but missing others. (actually I pay them $5/month)Facebook has a slice of it.Google+ wanted to do the above, but no one goes there anymore.LinkedIn is limited, and has an ugly user interface, but I like the “Friends in the News”Nuzzle is too short an attempt, but a thin overlay of Twitter.Configuring multiple Google Alerts is not manageable.Medium has these aspirations. It learns passively from your actions, and is getting better and better at it, but the content is just from Medium.

    1. VincentWright

      Curious, William: Please elaborate on why you’ve concluded that “Configuring multiple Google Alerts is not manageable.”… (Have an example or two you can share???)

      1. William Mougayar

        I already have multiple Google Alerts.They pile up in your Inbox, and you get the good with the bad. It’s hit and miss as far as content quality, unless you are very specific with multiple keyword combinations.

    2. sparkzilla

      We are working towards this at http://newslines.org, an unbiased crowdsourced news search engine that allows advanced filtering based on the news event type.

        1. sparkzilla

          As I said, we are working towards it. We’ve proven our concept. Now have to fill out our content.

    3. Vendita Auto


    4. Matt Kruza

      I think facebook is closest to this in long-term. It is also very very scary to publishers for the absolute power they can leverage over it due to this. Facebook also has the advantage of monetizing through the greatest ad monetization / impression engine ever (google is fundamentally different to them making money through intent driven search). I am not an unbridled facebook fan but their insane reach and involvement in people’s life and monetization ad machine means they are best suited to deliver this type of solution

      1. Brian Weisberg

        Personally I just don’t trust Fb to provide honest curation. But I also left Fb about a year ago. My stream was starting to look like an elementary school food fight and I got sick of it. At the end of the day all I need is Instagram and Twitter, the former gives me visual updates for my friends and family with the latter enabling me to build a professional network with relevant news.Thinking about this I think Nuzzel + Twitter > Fb news.

        1. Daniel Butler

          What do you mean by honest curation?Facebook is a loud mouth piece for the the people that be best if they didn’t air their ideas. I, like you, mostly use Instagram but Fb owns Instagram.

          1. Richard

            Favebook is a maketplace that is getting better and better with time.

          2. Brian Weisberg

            In hindsight”honest” was more of an emotional word choice than descriptive. From my perspective their curation is not organic, it seems to be more of a “pay to play” plus political bias. I personally enjoy reading a balanced mix of liberal and conservative media – my view is reading both sides keeps you honest.I know that they own Instagram and if they make too many more changes to that product I may leave that network as well. I exclusively use it to keep up with photos of my friends travels, babies, and day to day lives.

          3. Daniel Butler

            Gotcha. I agree with all of your points.

        2. Matt Kruza

          I probably agree with you more than disagree. I don’t exactly trust them, its just the economics and business case is so much on facebook’s side at least for the general curated news for the masses (90% +). Some certainly wont trust or even use them, but that is not going to happen to most. Most really dont care about privacy unless it directly and visibly effects them. Most people dont / won’t say that if asked, but that is how their actions speak, and probably even me in some case. Taking step to go off facebook is very rare so certainly i can see that you do take that more seriously!

        3. Mike Nicholls

          Facebook will show whatever they get paid to show, impossible to get your content in front of your page followers without paying.Have a look at http://Newscloud.io for curation based on the topics you are interested in.

      2. Gautam Mishra

        IMO there’s a fundamental problem with relying on FB for news. FB’s raison d’etre is to bring us together. This is best accomplished by showing us what we have in common. This is in many ways the very opposite of the raison d’etre for news.To borrow an example from arithmetic, Facebook aims to produce the GCF (greatest common factor) – it succeeds when it shows two people what they have in common because it strengthens their bond. News is the LCM (lowest common multiple) – it succeeds when it shows two people the broadest possible array of relevant information. Not every story a news source shows is relevant for every reader but it does show every story that is relevant for every reader.These two things, the GCF and the LCM, are only equal when the two numbers are identical, or when one is a multiple of the other. In other words, if all people are clones then FB is a reliable source of news. The danger of course is that by relying on FB for news, we are all becoming clones…

        1. Matt Kruza

          totally agree facebook (and other social media graphs) used as content distribution leads to echo chamber and our increased polarization. Most peoplle want this, despite people saying this could have bad societal effects. To be clear, i don’t think facebook SHOULD win this battle, just it is likely to

    5. Rob Pennoyer

      I think you’re missing the point. Or maybe I am. But none of these things that you’ve listed are news. The question is if one would pay for news, not aggregators or read-laterers.If the topic is paying for news, we should probably discuss the people and companies that actually produce it. If all that comes to mind is which filter has the best UI, then we are in some kind of trouble.

      1. William Mougayar

        yes, and no.News is so fragmented today, such that IF you want to pay for it at the source (like NY Times or WSJ), then good luck, because you are diverging your attention even more. Aggregators bring the news, so why not consider them as part of this question about news?

        1. awaldstein

          Give me one that will change my life or create a new habit.I’m completely open to change but more and more as a storyteller and brand maker the most interesting information comes from happenstance connections and synchronicity. Learning the most from thinkers in adjacent fields not digging deeper into experts.

    6. awaldstein

      Predictably we care about the opposite things my friend.Honestly I don’t thing discovery (your list) is the issue, quality (mine). 95% of everything there gets to us through any of the major nets.I can’t remember when not finding the 5% mattered to me.I will agree that readability on mobile and sharing is a big deal but I’ll take the most primitive tools with better content any day.

      1. William Mougayar

        well, if you read what everyone else is reading, then where is your edge?i like to find gems and needles in the stack, and that takes some effort. no one will do it for you, except yourself.

        1. awaldstein

          My edge is my opinion and what I do with the information I get.There is no golden nugget, there is only intuition and nuance that matters to me.And honestly–you might be interested in this–i would say that podcasts are becoming the largest network extenders as for one hour every day i simply podcast surf, listening to a huge breadth of topics and in my fashion reach out to people that interest me and that creates a new node on my net.Yesterday was the people behind adafruit, today it was digging into interviews with the director and actors behind Captain Fantastic opening up some new people doing creative work around storytelling.Curation does not do that for me.

          1. William Mougayar

            What tool/app/site do you use to surf for podcasts?The only thing that will keep me on a treadmill for 30mins+ is a great podcast or YouTube video.

          2. awaldstein

            I switch between This American Life and Soundcloud and more and more, pings from friends and invariably everything is on Soundcloud.I never run our of interesting things and every day i exercise to stories. Today i listened to the Carol Robinson story, truly one of the most inspiring women of our times, who changed scientific research doing it all on her own terms.And my friend (and I say this to you as a good friend)–If you are struggling to add exercise to your life and if the treadmill is the extent of it, then the problem isn’t information it is focus and understanding that without it and nutrition, you are simply done for a lot earlier than I’m sure you want.

          3. William Mougayar

            I know, but get bored easily when doing something repetitive.

          4. awaldstein

            Then you have been blessed as once you truly deal with serious stuff with your body, or watch others around you deal with it, or decide that life is 30 years longer but you need to work really hard to keep them in the middle of life-an hour a day is simply a no brainer.Do it!

          5. Richard

            Hire a personal trainer and a personal chef (to train your body) for 6 months, I don’t care if you have to mortgage your house. It will be the best investment you’ll have ever made.

          6. William Mougayar

            I’m working through the routines…and it’s working actually.

          7. LE

            I get bored easier than almost anyone. So I don’t think it’s that.With exercise I don’t because I get in a zone. Time flies. And I’ve never had a problem with it either and actually feel very lucky about that (as opposed to some other things that I take for granted).I think this is a built in in people, similar to creativity, intelligence and a host of other attributes. Not that there aren’t tweaks anyone can do. One is stop trying to be a champion and just settle for the bronze.Along those lines one bit of advice that I will give you is an edge case that I discovered that goes along with my theory of exercise (that has worked for me). Go for 80% of what you can do and do it everyday. Not 110% and suffer injury and create a mental block that is difficult to overcome.Here is an example. I do various exercise every single day (I won’t get into what I do). And my routine is loosely regimented. Years ago I decided to add pushups to my routine. So I quickly got up to 40 pushups in one sitting. But what I found was that I dreaded doing 40 pushups because the last 6 were the most difficult. So what I did was cut back to 26 pushups (which I later increased to 30) and viola I have done pushups every single morning since (this is years and years). Now most people would screw with that and start adding on extra pushups. But my approach is different and based on my needs and works for me. Simple solution. Same approach with the other exercise that I do. Same thing every single day. No increases.There are also little tweaks you can do. My latest is to add an obstacle course in my office (files on the floor) so that I have to lift up my leg everytime I go from my desk to the laser printer (which I purposely set in the outer office).

          8. Lilly Ninan

            i can tell you digressed a bit here not wanting to share the real podcast stuff to william. too bad.

          9. Girish Mehta

            But William why would you want to be on a treadmill for 30mins+ ?YMMV, but typically the contribution to fitness is 80-85% Diet and 15-20% Exercise (and that is Strength, HIIT, Cardio, Yoga etc combined).The 20% is important, but if you get the 80% right, you will find the exercise is a walk in the park (maybe…literally).

          10. William Mougayar

            I am varying it, but the treadmill is convenient and in the house, so I don’t have to go anywhere, although I can run outside. I am planning to do a mini-triathlon next year. (1/2 mile swim, 12 mile bike, 3 mile run)

          11. WA

            Treadmill. Agreed. Ascending and descending inclines. Increasing and decreasing speeds. Podcast – news cast and audible time. Most excellent. And then there is the pool. Florida.

          12. creative group

            William Mougayar:Where? US (NYC) or the beautiful only in summer or fall Canada. (Too cold for our thinned out blood being in the Valley of the Sun much too long).Thanks in advance. And what is the moderator thing?#Unequivocally&UnapologeticallyIndependent#ProudIndependent

          13. William Mougayar

            In NYC. I’m often enough there.It has been a great summer on the east coast so far!

          14. creative group

            William Mougayar:What keeps people away from the extreme heat in Arizona actually is a mild summer that is passing quickly. Do those who are baby boomers realize how fast this year has paased? It is already August. Not complaining because the weather favors our location seven months out of the year. 75 degree average throughout the winter months without snow. No tropical storms, hurricanes, tornados or major earthquake endure. We have no idea how people do it yearly.Currently 90 degree dry heat and no sweating as the sun sets.https://uploads.disquscdn.c…Arizona Diamondbacks Stadium. Daily view.

          15. JLM

            .Phoenix forecast highs:Mon 108FTues 110FWed 107FThur 102FFri 102FSat 103FSun 104FMon 103FTues 103FOf course, it’s a DRY heat, no? I used to travel to Pheonix and enjoyed that dry heat. Ugh.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

          16. creative group

            JLM:The Canadians have benefited from the former CAD record highs (currently down to .77) to purchase homes here in record numbers. We love love Canadian women. Well all women. (Lifetime bachelor talk) You would surprised how five to ten degrees from average would do. Residents are rarely in the sun. Just move through it like the snow in Minneapolis/St Paul’s walkways. The current temperature is lovely. Your blood thins out to tolerate heat and thickens for cold. Body is highly adaptable. God made no mistakes with creation. (Some will rightfully list just a few, but we humans are adaptable and learn from them)

          17. creative group

            JLM:That Texas humidity is nothing to overlook. The recent floods in Houston took lives. So many reasons not to locate in Texas as there are the many reasons to stay. There are crazy vacationers who come to Phoenix Metro to Golf in 100 plus and drink alcohol (dehydrates the body in extreme heat).

          18. William Mougayar

            I love Phoenix. The best pizza west of Naples is at Bianco’s. I will be there again in October. A few yeas ago, I was there and Oprah was filming the best American Pie, so I appeared in the clip on TV during 10 seconds, sitting at the bar.

          19. Girish Mehta

            Its different if you are training for a event. Else for fitness, you don’t need more than 30 mins of cardio. All the Best with the mini-triathlon.

          20. William Mougayar

            Thanks. The recommendation is at least 150 mins of active time per week.

          21. creative group

            Girish Mehta:Staying fit when you are younger will assist when you are older. Some rare cases are hereditary (Asians, etc) but not wanting a firm and healthy body (even if you can’t achieve it) doesn’t sound logical with current scientific evidence that exercise works.

          22. William Mougayar

            One doesn’t negate the other. You can have a balance between deterministic and serendipitous news.

          23. JLM

            .Scrabble, letter count victor! Big time.”Deterministic” and “serendipitous” in the same sentence and separated only by “and”? WTF? Huuuuuuuuuuuuge! Bigly.[“negate” isn’t shabby]If you work “lagniappe” into the sentence, the Internet, as we know it breaks.Well played! Linguist. Author. Blockchainer. Well played!JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

          24. William Mougayar

            Good espying on your part 🙂

          25. Richard

            Since you are doing all this curation, time to share, maybe you have a product ready to sprout?

          26. awaldstein

            This is not the spot to discuss.

          27. Lilly Ninan

            what podcasts you listen to ?

        2. JLM

          .The edge is always discernment. Discernment is a product of being experienced and thoughtful.When Reagan was President, an odd fact bubbled to the surface at the CIA. A “runner” — a guy who rode his bike around the East German countryside watching Russian units detected a funny thing.[This guy had more flat tires across from Russian military facilities than the rest of East Germany combined.]The Russian armor units — pressing up against the East – West German border — were not sending replacement parts to their units. They were not repairing damaged tanks. The damaged tanks were parked in a specific part of the motor pools so they could be seen. The inventory climbed.One gray haired analyst at the CIA (who had served in a US armor unit as an officer) blurted out, “The Russians are going home.”This one bit of analysis lay there for more than a year and was debated by all the young, computer savvy analysts and “smart guys” — the Princeton crowd.They dismissed it.Somehow, it got to Reagan and Reagan believed it.Two years later, the Russians toppled the Berlin Wall and went home. More than half their tanks were inoperable when they used to have 95% “up” inventory.[Historical note: The Berlin Wall came down on 9 Nov 1989. Reagan left office in Jan 1989. He was NOT the President when the Berlin Wall came down though everybody thinks he was because they remember his 12 June 1987 speech at the Brandenberg Gate. In fact, Reagan began to call for the wall to be dismantled in 1981 and again in 1986. He was a constant campaigner and it was his persistence that drove Gorbachev to take the action he did. He knew the power of symbolism and the symbol of the wall coming down remains as the symbol of the failure of Communism.]It is not the facts, it is the experience and discernment to analyze them correctly.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

          1. William Mougayar

            I agree with you more than you agree with yourself, once more.But reading keeps the water of knowledge flowing.When Peter Drucker got asked how he predicts the future, he replied: “I never predict. I just look out the window and see what’s visible—but not yet seen.”

          2. Donna Brewington White

            Drucker’s comment is a good argument for diversity. We see different things from different experiences, perspectives, vantage points… that collective vision can be powerful, each seeing something that is not yet seen by others, and sharing that insight.

          3. William Mougayar


          4. Peter Beddows

            Thank you @wmoug:disqus for including Drucker here: Perfectly apt quote. Have always loved, nay, admired, Peter Drucker; it also did not hurt that his accent and my mother’s were very similar! :)Wanted to meet him again once I came to California but never got that chance before he passed. I was in college in the UK when and where I met him. Still have the book he gave me with his autograph. I think a lot of my own business success on both sides of The Pond came from meeting him and from what I subsequently learned from him.Probably gained at least as much insight and knowledge about business from him, if not even more than that gained from all that I learned from any other source. He made doing business sound interesting, challenging and fun at a time when I had just been reluctantly forced to stop playing in a Rock Band as my – up till then – chosen career!

          5. William Mougayar

            Wow, that’s a great story. I listened to him live once in the mid-90’s during a business process reengineering seminar that Michael Hammer put together. He sat on a stool and delivered his talk and took questions in a room of 700 people.

          6. Peter Beddows

            Thank you William Mougayar for your kind words. I teased my father in 1988 – the last time he visited me in CA – because he had vehemently insisted that “Rock and Roll” would never last and here was Mick Jagger and The Stones (still) performing that very day in CA. But that’s enough about that story! :)Glad you had the chance to meet Drucker in person. He was definitely the kind of person, very humble and gracious, whose impression left memorable actionable anecdotes in mind with the manner in which he presented information.ps: I also like your post “I am no Millennial, but I’m a news junkie”; I can relate. Thank you for that.

          7. creative group

            JLM:Is there any policy that the late President Reagan inacted, promoted as policy that effected people in the United States you disagree with? Independent inquiring minds want to know.Both parties mention with reverence a special memory or historical event promoting a Republican or Democrat but can rarely acknowledge and list mistakes in policy that harmed the American people for generations.Thanks in advance.#Unequivocally&UnapologeticallyIndependent#ProudIndependent

          8. awaldstein

            I’ll answer for me.He is responsible for the breadth of the aids epidemic, by refusing to acknowledge it, refusing to offer funding early to control it or stand up and address the country about it.Till it was too late.Be it his lack of courage or his homophobia I don’t know. His head in the sand attitude towards it puts a lot of blood on his hands.

          9. JLM

            .You mentioned this one other time and I let it pass as I didn’t have my facts in order but I did some research and I think you’re terribly wrong. Wrong on the facts.First, Reagan took office in 1981 when AIDS was not on the radar yet nationally. [By way of a benchmark, Rock Hudson, a friend of Reagan’s would not die until 1985.]Long before that time, Reagan — who one must remember was an actor and who had many gay friends amongst whom he numbered Rock Hudson who died of AIDS without every having said the word himself — had already fought the infamous California Prop 6 battle.Cali Prop 6 was an initiative which stood for the proposition to bar gays and lesbians from teaching in California public schools. The Prop started with 75% support and was winning right before the election by 55%-45%.Reagan was encouraged to take a stand on it — two time California Governor and all that — and came out AGAINST it which put the knife through the chest of the Prop (which was pretty standard Republican orthodoxy at the time).Reagan’s public stand took the form of public utterances including an op-ed piece he wrote which was the prelude to the Prop being defeated soundly.If you know the name David Mixner, future FOB (Friend of Bill Clinton), he was a LA gay rights advocate who attributed the failure of Prop 6 to Reagan’s personal intervention. Remember Reagan already was in the race for the Republican presidential nomination for years by this time.He said, “He turned opinion around and saved that election for us. He just thought it was wrong and came out against it.”If you know Mixner’s future role, you cannot imagine him saying such a thing about any Republican, let alone the 1980 Presidential nominee.I belabor this point because part of the undercurrent is this nonsense that Reagan was disdainful or anti-gay. With his Hollywood background, that was simply not the case and his public stand on Prop 6 is dispositive of that notion.During the Reagan administration the first national study was done on AIDS as commissioned by Reagan and done under the supervision of Surgeon General C Everett Koop.The entire administration funding for AIDS in the year prior to Reagan taking office was $8MM which he increased to $26.4MM — he more than tripled it, which the US Congress increased to $44MM.Reagan then doubled the amount spent on AIDS research every year thereafter for the balance of his presidency.This notion that Reagan was asleep at the switch about AIDS comes from a spurious essay written in the NYT by a guy named Kramer who said that Reagan was disdainful of AIDS and refused to even say the word. He states that Reagan refused to even say the word.This is demonstrably false as Reagan, famously, visited the Dept of Health and Human Svcs (1986) and gave a speech which included the sentence: “One of our highest public health priorities is going to be continuing to find a cure for AIDS.”His funding record thereafter spoke the truth to this statement.The notion he was the problem is simply not true and is in lock step with the infamous TV series The Reagans which tried to depict Reagan as a bigot and a hill billy.There is ample evidence that Reagan was supportive of the entire gay community, took courageous public stands like Prop 6, commissioned THE definitive study by the Surgeon Gen’l, spoke publicly about the effort to find a cure, and provided an increasing level of funding for research on AIDS every year of his administration.If one can provide evidence that refutes the above, I am all ears. Was Reagan the most vocal advocate in the effort against AIDS? No.Was he the ghoul that some suggest? There is NO EVIDENCE to support that notion.Did he provide substantial funding for the fight? Yes. Indeed.The whole world got caught off guard.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

          10. creative group

            JLM:Can you answer our question? You made time to construct a rebuttal of awaldstein answer but appear to sticking to the party line of the Karl Rove doctrine to deny, deflect, defend and repeat talking points no matter the facts (not accusing you of altering any facts as you see them but delaying and not answering the question like we would give up on anything).

          11. PhilipSugar

            This is why politics suck. You will never get another comment back from me. It bothers me so much. You are dead to me.

          12. awaldstein

            I’m with you.JLM and I are friends, politically on the opposite side of the fence completely.The exchange above though is a good one to me. I learned a lot, did not change my mind but my thoughts on this moving forwards are more tempered and nuanced and that is a huge plus for me.

          13. JLM

            .What sincere discussion does is to educate all of us. When people whose opinion I respect, YOU, make a statement it inspires me to do the research to find out why they think that way.In that process, I become better educated and empathetic as to why someone thinks a certain way. Often, my thoughts are not fully developed and thus they are subject to change.This is why I say, “When ideas wrestle, the result is better ideas.”The other thing that happens is that we begin to measure those “fences” and find out they may be knee high and not sky high and that we can see over them and step over them.I do not want to live in an echo chamber where everyone agrees with me. I want to see how my ideas fare in hand-to-hand combat.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

          14. Peter Beddows

            Totally agree with these sentiments @JLM:disqus and I have thoroughly enjoyed reading this thread. Thank you and @SixgillBlog:disqus for this exchange. I always learn more about my adopted America from following you guys.BTW: Not an echo chamber!

          15. PhilipSugar

            Here are the three things I can no longer stand: and they all have to do with people thinking they are lawyers:1. I fight my side no matter what I don’t care about the truth.2. I ask complex questions and say you can only answer yes or no.3. I try for the “gotcha” question….try and lure you in.All three do not try to get to a solution, they try and get to a win.

          16. Peter Beddows

            So very true and well put @philipsugar:disqus

          17. PhilipSugar

            Thanks. It really has been bothering me lately. I even see it in business. Somebody asks a complex question and they say: All I want to know is yes or no!Should I invest in a business opportunity: Well what is the price, what is your risk profile, what do you think of the opportunity??I didn’t ask that….yes or no? FU, FU, FU.

          18. creative group

            PhilipSugar:”You are dead to me”.https://www.youtube.com/wat…(The weasel)!take your sensitive *** to the corner and don’t come back.Our greatest weakness lies in giving up. The most certain way to succeed is always to try just one more time. -Thomas A. EdisonWeakness of attitude becomes weakness of character. -Albert EinsteinWeakness is what brings ignorance, cheapness, racism, homophobia, desperation, cruelty, brutality, all these things that will keep a society chained to the ground, one foot nailed to the floor. -Henry RollinsPolitics is the art of choosing between the disastrous and the unpalatable. -John Kenneth Galbraith#Unequivocally&UnapologeticallyIndependent#ProudIndependent

          19. awaldstein

            I expected this JLM and actually was looking forward to this.Yes the whole world was caught off guard. Terribly. A combination of a new disease and a cultural unwillingness to address I’ll admit the reality of the bathhouses that this grew out of.But to my reading of the facts–and I”m not an expert but have done some–Reagan and Koch also as I understand had the opportunity to address this early.Are they homophobes by nature? I don’t know.But they both had the opportunity to embrace this and change the course of history for the better.They could of. They knew of it. They had the opportunity to be leaders. And they didn’t.Are they monsters because of it. I don’t think so.But to me, for Reagan, a man that flirted with greatness, it is a stain.Thanks for your time on this one.You are a notable historian and I learned from your response and am a bit more tempered in my thinking cause of it.

          20. JLM

            .Very classy answer. One of the reasons I like hanging here at Freddie’s Joint is because of guys like you, Arnold. Thank you for a great dialogue.No doctor should ever be involved in the social implications of any disease. It is their job to heal the sick, not judge how the person got sick.AIDS was a tragedy and in its explosion, it took too long to gear up to deal with it.Before one gets to being a homophobe, there are a lot of way stations and gears. It is not binary. We have to re-learn that fact constantly.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

          21. PhilipSugar

            Could not have said better.

          22. creative group

            JLM:Fortunately you are not weak and can handle a question.Are any of the following accounts true or require revision on history?——–Perceived President Reagan’s failures or missteps!The Iran-Contra Affair in which arms were traded for hostages and the proceeds were given to the anti-communist rebels, the Contras in Nicaragua.Documents:• A Memorandum sent January 17, 1986 titled, Covert Action Finding Regarding Iran, from John Poindexter to Reagan recommends the sale of 4000 TOW weapons to Iran for the release of American hostages. The memo is authorized with Reagan’s signature. This document is significant because it provides undeniable proof that Reagan was clear that his administration trading arms for hostages and was doing so with his authorization. (Link: — http://www.gwu.edu/~nsarchi…• Personal notes from Oliver North taken in 1986 in regards to his meeting Manuel Noriega. North proposed that in return for Noriega’s assassination of Sandinista leadership and helping the Contra’s, U.S. pressure would subside in regards to Panama’s drug smuggling and the U.S. would help “clean up” their image. There is also mention of establishing training camps in Panama for Contra operatives. These notes signify Noriega’s. involvement and what the U.S. would give in return for his assistance. (Links: http://www.gwu.edu/~nsarchi… | http://www.gwu.edu/~nsarchi…• Personal notes from Caspar Weinberger that describe conversations which Reagan was determined to trade arms for hostages, quote “President sd. he could answer charges of illegality but he couldn’t answer charges that ‘big strong President Reagan passed up chance to free hostages.” Weinberg and Secretary of State Shultz objected to Reagan’s position vehemently. These notes represent the point in which leaders in his own administration disagreed with him and attempted to sway the President from his course. (Link: — http://www.gwu.edu/~nsarchi…• Document written on April 4, 1986 by Oliver North which makes the clear connection between the arms for hostages deals and the backing of the Contras. Before the release of this document, it was unclear that a connection existed between the two events. (Link: — http://www.gwu.edu/~nsarchi…• Excerpts from George H.W. Bush’s diary between November 4-5, 1986 which note his full understanding of the entire affair. This is significant because Bush failed to disclose his diary to investigators and then pardoned several players in the affair. (Link: — http://www.gwu.edu/~nsarchi…• Memorandum For Record by Caspar Weinberger on November 10, 1986 which describes an important meeting in the Oval Office with the President and other members of the administration. This is significant because it is the first of several attempts by the administration to produce a unified response to the scandal which was growing in popularity. (Link: — http://www.gwu.edu/~nsarchi…• November 13, 1986 Reagan addressed the nation, denying a variety of charges and stating: “We did not—repeat—did not trade weapons or anything else for hostages, nor will we.” (Link: — href=http://www.presidency.ucsb….• Subsequently Reagan appointed the Tower Commission (Special Review Board for the National Security Council) which issued a report highly critical of his management. (Links: — http://www.presidency.ucsb…. and http://www.presidency.ucsb….The Robert Bork appointment to the Supreme Court and Reagan’s refusal to withdraw the nomination even after it was a clear and certain failure. This was not only an embarrassment to the Reagan administration, but hurt his relationship with the Senate and created tremendous amounts of ill will.Documents:• The first announcement to the public on July 1, 1987 that Robert Bork would be nominated to fill a vacancy in the Supreme Court. This announcement to reporters came before the radio address to the public on July 4, 1987. (Link: — http://www.presidency.ucsb….• Statements regarding Bork’s American Bar Association rating on September 9, 1987. Bork received the highest rating possible from the ABA. Reagan emphasized this and portrayed Bork as the most qualified person for the job. However, the Democrat opposition ignored this important fact. (Link: — http://www.presidency.ucsb….• This statement on the Senate floor by Senator Kennedy set the tone for the Bork opposition and had a deep negative impact on the Bork appointment. The accusations of racism, sexism, and strong prejudices impacted the American public, thus diminishing public support for Bork’s appointment. (Link: — http://home.att.net/~midnig…• Bork’s five day testimony before the Senate proved unimpressive. Bork answered questions in a strange manner and with awkward responses. The hearing also caused his public approval to diminish. This Washington Post-ABC news poll taken during and after the five day testimony shows the drop in public approval of the nominee. (Link: — http://www.encyclopedia.com…• A radio address on October 3, 1987 given by Reagan that attempts to gain support and momentum for Bork despite the overwhelming evidence that his nomination will fail. This clearly shows Reagan’s mistake of not withdrawing the nomination in the face of certain defeat. (Link: — http://www.presidency.ucsb….• Statement on October 23, 1987 by Reagan in which he announces the failure of Robert Bork’s appointment and his sadness about the political attacks Bork received. (Link: — http://www.presidency.ucsb….• This radio address on October 31, 1987 signifies the end of the battle for Bork and the nomination of a new judge, Judge Douglas H. Ginsburg. This time Reagan hopes the misery Bork had to endure will not be repeated to Ginsburg. (Link: — http://www.presidency.ucsb….The failure in Lebanon. Reagan encouraging the Israel invasion and sending in the Marines with insufficient forces for their mission proved to be two dreadful mistakes compounded upon one another.Documents:• In this address to the nation on October 3, 1983, Reagan states a position that would later change with the bombing of the Marine barracks and pressure from congress. Additionally, this position was not supported by any of his generals or secretary of defense. This was the position of U.S. holding its ground in Lebanon with a continued presence of the armed forces. (Link: — http://www.presidency.ucsb….• According to Lou Cannon, The Role of a Lifetime, Reagan ignored the counsel of his military advisers that our forces should be pulled out of Beirut and their vulnerability there. (Link: — Not Available)• On October 23, 1983 a suicide bomber detonated his vehicle inside the marine barracks killing hundreds of servicemen and women. Remarks given to reports indicate that at that time Reagan was still determined to stay the course in Lebanon. (Link: — http://www.presidency.ucsb….• After immense pressure from Congress and public opinion, the withdrawal of U.S. forces in Lebanon was ordered on January 3, 1984. (Link: — http://www.presidency.ucsb….Strengthened the Power of the PresidencyExercised his removal power by firing the air traffic controllers who went on strike, forced his White House Chief of Staff to resign, and many other removals strengthened the presidential power and his commitment to the unitary executive.Documents:• On August 3, 1981 Reagan announces the strike and their unfair demands which would be burdensome to taxpayers. He declared if they do not return to duty in 48 hours, their jobs would be forfeited. (Link: — http://www.presidency.ucsb….• The removal of Secretary of State Alexander Haig who was forced out when it became clear that he was not doing a good job and his administration’s goals could be better served without him. This is the letter accepting Haig’s resignation and Haig’s announcement to Reagan. (Link: — http://www.presidency.ucsb….

          23. ErikSchwartz

            I don’t think Reagan as an individual was anti-gay. I do think Reagan as a politician was pandering to the evangelical community.

          24. JLM

            .Any evidence to support that notion?Reagan, of course, beat Carter who actually WAS an evangelical. There is no evidence to support the idea that Reagan did anything which was targeted on evangelicals.In the early 1980s, the sum total of the evangelical movement, politically, would likely have been the Moral Majority, the Concerned Women for America and, maybe, the Christian Coalition.These organizations would likely have been appropriately thought of as being the “religious right” rather than being evangelicals. In those days the Christian Right was almost exclusively the Protestants and the Roman Catholics. No Jews, no Muslims, no anything else. Pretty predictable.The issues were school prayer, the teaching of creationism, and abortion. The issue of homosexuality was not a big national issue as that voting bloc had not yet crystallized. Even today, it is not big numbers though they punch way over their weight.Reagan was, figuratively speaking, “out of the closet” on the basis of his very public opposition to California Prop 6 — which went from a certain victory to a stunning defeat due to his efforts.The evangelicals — who were not big in numbers then and, in my view, still aren’t — were in Carter’s camp.Reagan won a thunderous victory — 489 v 49 in the Electoral College and 44 states. Remember that John Anderson was in that race and drew about 7% of the vote. People forget about John Anderson.So, no, I don’t see any evidence that Reagan either did go after or needed the so-called “evangelical” vote in 1980.In 1984, Reagan won an overwhelming victory taking 49 states and beating Mondale by 19% in the popular vote.So, why do you think Reagan even cared about evangelicals?I am not aware of any evidence that suggests either of those elections were anything than old white guy beat downs.One last note — Reagan was never a religious person. I am constantly surprised how little our recent Presidents are seen in church. I don’t recall seeing a single picture of Obama in church and I am pretty sure that if WJC and HRC ever set foot in a church they’d burst into flames. Trump’s hair would spontaneously combust. It is a truly missed opportunity, politically speaking.I am amazed at the things people will say and believe about politics when the actual data is so contrary. Don’t mean to be contentious but it is, really, all about the facts.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

          25. ErikSchwartz

            Reagan won less than 51% of the popular vote in 1980. While it was an electoral landslide it was much closer than history pretends. Polling in October and November 1980 had Carter up by 5%.Carter ended up losing born again voters in 1980 by 25% (a far wider margin than in the rest of the population). In 1976 born again voters split 50-50.Religious right/Born again/Evangelical is just semantics. The election and polling data show that the gains the GOP made with that community between 1976 and 1980 is what swung the election.

          26. JLM

            .The popular vote means …………………….. nothing. The EC means …………………… everything.Nonetheless, Reagan took 50.7% v 40% for Carter. Carter was the freakin’ incumbent. John Anderson was a sideshow. A protest vote, perhaps.One of the practical problems with trying to fine tune election results which are based on post-election polling is the ability to correctly identify both the segments and the actual “compelling” identifier which drove the vote.As an example — I am a conservative, a Texan, a veteran, college educated, a businessman and an entrepreneur. Which of these characteristics is determinative of my vote or voting pattern.The religious right, born again, evangelical distinction is NOT just semantics.As an example, I was baptized at birth and don’t consider myself as “born again.” I am certainly not an evangelical. I can hardly speak in my own tongue. But I do consider myself both religious and slightly right but I would never consider myself as “religious right.”When someone is within those self-identified segments — religious right, born again, evangelical — they are also wearing some other label. Likely “conservative.”Where Reagan won big was with conservatives. Whether they were also religious right, born again, or evangelical is not really determinative of their vote. He won them at “hello” with hello being their conservative nature.It is impossible to suggest that someone “swung” an election on one or two issues when you have such enormous majorities as Reagan had.Lies, damn lies, statistics.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

          27. Donna Brewington White

            I remember John B. Anderson. Fondly. Illinois girl here. I was a receptionist one summer during high school in the main office of a low income housing agency and took a message for the Executive Director from Congressman Anderson’s office, investigating a complaint from an elderly woman living in “the projects.” (My dad was the Deputy Director.)

          28. Peter Beddows

            Well said @SixgillBlog:disqus I think this may have gotten out of context in the thread after refreshing my browser: refers to the thread.

          29. SubstrateUndertow

            Communism did not fail because it has never been tried !Some say free market capitalism is now failing but ounce again it has not because it has never been tried 🙂

          30. JLM

            .You may want to call Vladimir the Impaler and tell him about Communism not failing. He seems a little preoccupied on the subject.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

          31. creative group

            JLM:Can we agree that Putin is not interested in communism but power and money. The Communist Manifesto is not covered in what is occurring in the Authoritarian governments worldwide. China, Russia and Cuba (closet to Socialism) have no interest in Communism. It only interest is controlling people to maintain power. A true Communist country would never purchase Treasury bonds of a free market country. (The debate of the US not being a free market country is ridiculous).

          32. Peter Beddows

            Good one @JLM:disqus

        3. LE

          well, if you read what everyone else is reading, then where is your edge?Exactly. I am a big proponent of putting in effort to get an edge. To read things and watch things that aren’t aligned with my point of view or my knowledge and/or widely distributed because I want to get a snapshot of how people who are not like me think and how they feel. [1][1] It’s one of the reasons that I suffer through the comments here at AVC and maybe as a better example Hacker News.

        4. creative group

          William Mougayar:You and awaldstein might be talking past each other. The way you gather information may differ because the intent after you receive it may be different. One for information purposes verses investment purposes or the multitude of other reasons your tastes may differ.Two intelligent people talking pass each other is similar to one driving a Tesla P85 and one driving a Ferrari Enzo at top speed going in opposite directions then asked to describe who was in the vehicle driving by them. (Not practical). Two fast well honored vehicles with different meanings. They both go fast in the end.

          1. William Mougayar

            Ha, that was funny.Arnold and I get along very well at wine bars of all places, and I promise to kick his butt at his gym next time.

    7. Scott Barnett

      William – what if you had all this, and the focus was specifically on hyperlocal – news/events/info going on around you right now? Most often, this would be useful for your own community where you live/work, but it could also be applied to communities that you travel to or visit.

    8. Drew Meyers

      I think you’re an edge case. I’d wager a bet it’d be very difficult to build a business to satisfy your needs/desires – simply because of lack of market size of those who consume content the way (& at the rate) you do.

      1. William Mougayar

        You may be right, but professional users in corporations also want specific news based on their competition, customers, industry, etc.

    9. creative group

      William Mougayar:Did we miss in reading your tea leafs what tools you use to gather your news? What app besides Twitter, Google+, Facebook or other social media we don’t subscribe that you recommend. We work for a living so the aforementioned will not fit in our daily routine. The AVC blog fits in after reading the physical WSJ and USAToday. Google News and Flipboard we use after actually reviewing our mobile device for obscure news not covered.

      1. William Mougayar

        In practice, I use Twitter, Facebook and Feedly mostly, in addition to whatever comes into my Inbox this catches my attention.But for Blockchain related news, I concocted my own super aggregator which I made public, onblockchains.org – it aggregates 200 sources into a single river of news.

        1. creative group

          William Mougayar:Thanks

    10. Mike Nicholls

      Hi William,I was frustrated with the problems you listed as well, so I built https://Newscloud.io which is a real time news search platform.Its in beta at the moment but processing and sorting 100-200k stories a day into 5 million topics from 130,000 sites. It has a machine generated summary, topic tagging, and sentiment analysis plus a trust ranking that is showing which sites are more trusted than others.You can login with Twitter and it will analyse your last 1000 tweets and build a topic list based on what you tweet about and you can save this as your own personal newsfeed.Its still a bit light on social interaction with friends but we are working on this. You can quickly share dozens of stories straight to Twitter with a hashtag. Shortly we will enable sharing to Buffer and streaming topics to Slack.You sound like our ideal user, would really appreciate your feedback and any suggestions about what would make it more useful.ThanksMike

      1. William Mougayar

        I just signed up. It reminds a bit of what we were doing at my earlier startup, Eqentia 2008-2011. Feel free to email me [email protected]

    11. sigmaalgebra

      Warning: This post may contain ideas new to the reader and, thus, for the mainline, successful, MBA-like, non-technical, business executives or Silicon Valley information technology VCs be unwelcome, very irritating, a diatribe, too long, too difficult, and irrelevant to the long standards of mainline business.1) known areas of interests (by keyword & easy to add/remove keywords as interests change)Of course, as you likely know, I’m working on that.IMHO your mention of interests is on the center of the target (e.g., is a keyword all over my SQL database schema, code, documentation, and core math), but, again IMHO, your mention of keywords is not good, that is, is not nearly good enough as an accurate means of what is essentially some filtering.That is, there’s the stuff you want and the rest, and you want accurate filtering, that is, good separation, that is, all of the stuff you do want and none of it you don’t. Keywords, even key phrases, just are not a very accurate means of filtering. Indeed, with the language right, a dictionary matches any collection of keywords.Yup, sure, keywords/phrases can be terrific in some special cases — e.g., if you have a key phrase from a movie, then a search on that can often give you the movie and its transcript, etc. Basically, sometimes key words/phrases do accurately characterize specific content, but for all of the content that’s a small fraction, maybe less than 1/3rd.Nearly inevitably, what you want for each of your interests is content with the, call it for lack of a better word, the meaning, sure, information but, sure, maybe also just entertainment, you want. So, there is a need in some sense to get at, work with, honor, approximate, etc., meaning.Sure, doing much with meaning even just in text is a huge, computer science holy grail challenge and, for content not close to text, more challenging, still. Still, the need is some progress with meaning. Uh, key words/phrases are, for maybe 2/3rds of content, from poor to worse at characterizing meaning.So, that’s a more elaborate description of the need you mentioned and something of a formulation of the problem to be solved.Of course, nearly everyone in business will be convinced that all of this is just worse than a diatribe and irrelevant to business. And, GPS and its use of Einstein’s general relativity, that’s just some expensive nonsense out past the ozone, uh, the good ozone, and irrelevant to business.

    12. Peter Beddows

      @wmoug:disqus One solution I have found is a tool called paper.li (http://paper.li) through which you can create your own newspaper to daily gather/curate info from the web relative to specific keyword interests, particularly data from relevant twitter posts laid out in easy readable newspaper style.FYI: As an example, I created such a daily gathering to support my latest online web venture: You can see that example at https://tbbhd.me/2bAbTZF

      1. William Mougayar

        Paper li never did anything for me.

        1. Peter Beddows

          Oh well; can’t win them all. 🙂

  6. Steve Poland

    I pay for Jason’s Launch Ticker, which is an aggregation of startup/tech news.I do believe we need local news organizations / writers to keep local government honest. Checks and balances, although local newspapers keep falling to the wayside. Hopefully the rest have been able to find working business models, but I’m not sure that’s the case yet.

    1. BillMcNeely

      The hyperlocal craze of 2006-2008 killed this type of local news online it seems

      1. Scott Barnett

        Not true. There are plenty of hyperlocal digital publishers out there doing great work – they just don’t have $150M behind them and aren’t constantly bragging how they are going to “change the world”. This is the type of news that deserves support, because without these publishers, nobody is doing this crucial work.

        1. BillMcNeely

          Do you have a url for 1 so I can take a look?

          1. Scott Barnett

            I can give you about 150. But here’s a few we work with:redbankgreen.comvillagegreennj.comditmasparkcorner.combensonhurstbean.comracinecountyeye.comoaklandcountymoms.com

          2. BillMcNeely

            Awesome. Thanks for sharing!

    2. William Mougayar

      I thought Launch Ticker was free. But it’s tech centric.

      1. Jon Michael Miles

        There is a donation component. I get it and there was an ask a few weeks back.

  7. LIAD

    Do you pay for news?No.Would you pay for news?Possibly.Why haven’t you yet paid for news?News seems to be like water. Always flows downstream. Very seldom can’t get access to something I want to.What type of news would you most likely pay for?Opeds. General what-why-how-when stories are fungible, thus valueless.

    1. Matt Kruza

      The water is a good analogy because its very vital, but in most cases its so ubiquitous we under value it. There is so much news its super hard to get people to pay because their is so much free that is “almost as good”. Long form jounalism is often much better, but say it takes 5-10x the effort (which is probably true), it usually isnt worth 5-10 x the price consumers would have to pay, and advertising won’t drive 5-10x revenue so we are stuck in the situation we are

  8. BillMcNeely

    Sometime I think we should call news current events.At the moment I do my news for free through links in Twitter. When I can I wouldn’t mind paying for NYT Washington Post and the WSJ.I also wish I could pay for a curating system where I could pay for a subscription from multiply outlets but have it 1 screen.

  9. David C. Baker

    I’m a lot more likely to trust the news that I pay for.

  10. andyswan

    Actionable, exclusive and real time? I will pay big.CNN explaining to me that Obama wasn’t a founder of ISIS? I’ll pass.

    1. JLM

      .The liberal MSM missed class the day they ‘splained analogies and metaphors.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

      1. sigmaalgebra

        Sure, instead of the class on metaphors and analogies, the newsies were out back smoking funny stuff and dreaming of Karl Marx.But on Obama and Hillary being founders of ISIS, heck yes, not just as a metaphor or analogy but quite literally.E.g., athttp://www.breitbart.com/na…can seeKenneth R. Timmerman, “Fact Check: Were Obama and Hillary Founders of ISIS? You Bet,” Breitbart, 12 Aug, 2016.with in part:Even the left-stream media is now acknowledging that Donald Trump “has a point” when he blasts Hilary and Obama for creating ISIS….Thanks to Judicial Watch, we now have an August 2012 defense intelligence report on the civil war in Syria and the situation in Iraq that openly states that the policy of the United States and its allies was to support the Salafist opposition to Syrian president Bashar al-Assad.That opposition, at the time spearheaded by Al Qaeda in Iraq (AQI) and the Islamic State of Iraq (ISI), soon morphed into the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham, ISIS. And there’s lots more.My prediction:Assuming Trump wins, in 2017 we will get a long list of insider tell all books that will show that the US came really close to losing the Constitution and the whole country, dodged a bullet, etc. There will be a strong movement to strengthen the Constitution and/or laws about constraining the POTUS.In particular, political correctness, radical social justice, affirmative action, radical feminism, diversity, and the implicit denigration of competence and meritocracy will be seen as brilliant Russian sponsored sabotage and eviscerated.

    2. LE

      CNN explaining to me that Obama wasn’t a founder of ISIS?Yeah they (and others) really masturbated on that one. I am surprised they had enough toilet paper around to clean up the mess.What’s really scary though is if you watch Chris Matthews (MSNBC) where his face literally says that Chris believes that Trump believes 1/10th of what he is saying. There is no smile just true concern. At least when Hillary talks about the finger on the button (as if there is a finger that can launch with a button either literal or figuratively that it actually can happen like that) she knows she is just shuck jiving.

  11. Steve Poland

    At 37, I’d like to pay more news organizations, but there’s no easy way. For those couple of WSJ or BusinessFirst articles I want to read a month, I don’t want to dish out their hefty subscription fees. I view content much like Spotify. I’d like to pay a subscription fee of $10-$25/month and have it divided up amongst all the authors/orgs that I read content from. A long-form piece that takes me 15 minutes to read vs something that takes me 3 minutes to read may both be on par in terms of value/knowledge provided to me (similarly a 10min Sigur Ros song provides same satisfaction to me as a 3min Rural Alberta Advantage song).

  12. Phil Hayes-St Clair

    I use inkl (inkl.com). I pay once (15 AUD / month) for access to the world’s best publications and it’s part of my every day. @stp:disqus, @andyswan:disqus, @wmoug:disqus you might like it.

  13. Tom Evslin

    I’m scarcely a millennial but I do pay for the NYT and WSJ. I read them through the browser and not their apps whether on computer or phone.We also contribute money to the excellent online VT news in VTDigger.org, which has replaced our mostly struggling newspapers as the goto source for state news including real investigative reporting. Frontporchforum.com is mostly reader supported hyper-local news in Vermont which we support. Mary contributes to Vermont Public Radio, which I find too biased in their news.Point is, I guess, there’s more than one way to pay for news.

  14. Anne Libby

    I pay for the NY Times, and also give to WNYC, sporadically — sometimes a monthly membership, sometimes not.And as per the discussion here the other day, I’d pay Twitter (where I get the first look at news) if I could.

  15. LaMarEstaba

    1. I believe that content creators should be paid2. I use an ad blocker3. Therefore, I need to find an alternative route to pay content creators. Subscribing to a newspaper is a good way to do it.I get a whole bunch of news for free, but the WSJ and the Washington Post are the two newspapers that I have subscriptions for. My business professors (in undergrad and grad school) are adamant that everyone should read the WSJ daily, for professional purposes.

  16. falicon

    I don’t pay for any right now amd prob. wouldn’t on a reg. basis.What I really want though is a “debate” publication that presents both sides of a news story (likely from two different authors who have widly different fact based opinions). Especialy through *this* election I think it would really help break some filter bubbles and educte some people on the realities of real life in the gray areas…

  17. Steven Kuyan

    I pay for The Information but also read a lot of free content on Medium/blogs; I pay for Crains NY but also always reach my free limit on NYT and WSJ; and I pay for The Economist and use the free Reuters TV iPad app regularly.I think that’s a common theme, having multiple services and sources for our content. Everyone will pay for some services and use others for free, it just depends on the relevance of the content and the added value the content represents to the individual.

  18. Asim Aslam

    31. Millennial. Male. Would not pay for news. The question I would ask is what extra value am I receiving for paid content versus free content. The user interface point is pretty solid, most of us would pay for streamlined content with zero ads and a simple interface that provides some form of customised reading. The content itself is not as important and the UX.

    1. Brian

      35, Millennial. Male. Up until recently, I would agree – not pay for news. I think this is because by the time I got to the age when I would have historically had to pay for news, it was freely available – and that was a formative experience.However, as I’ve become more and more disenchanted with news (whether it’s cable news and their endless focus on Trump (pre-nomination) or other news that seems to be primarily focused on celebrity culture), I have begun to see the consequences. News isn’t free – it’s paid for by someone and these days, the revenue needs for news shapes a news culture that is, IMHO, seriously lacking. As more attention is drawn to the matter (e.g., John Oliver’s segment last weekend), I think more people will have a similar realization.So now … yes, absolutely, would pay for news that is serious, professional and unbiased. We need to get that back.

      1. William Mougayar

        It seems that older Millennials have different habits than younger ones.

        1. Brian Weisberg

          It would be interesting to see the data, but is an “older” Millenial I agree. I feel like that term really needs to be split into two sub groups.For the sake of data I’m 33

      2. Asim Aslam

        I can understand your sentiment and what it actually leads into is the need to support hard news and journalism which has been lacking in this day an age. That’s inherently due to media and news organisations having to compete for eyeballs and spending more time producing fluff pieces to drive that viewership.On that point, there’s definitely room for niche publications that provide a certain type of quality content with a paid subscription.I should also state that I’m in the UK and I choose to ignore a lot of mainstream news because of the very things you’ve talked about; the focus on trump, celebrity, etc.We mostly find ourselves becoming curators of our own content in this day and age. Keeping with the decentralised/p2p theme of USV, I do wonder whether it would be possible to crowdsource a quality publication. There was a day I stated the Medium was the next NyTimes or Washington Post.

        1. Brian Weisberg

          It’s unfortunate that quality has deteriorated with the rise in quantity. My belief is that the decline in quality is the true driver behind why we have had to take the reigns with our own curation. My personal workflow is to use Feedly to track my favorite sites, Medium follows, and Nuzzel notifications to source content that I save in Instapaper. While I would like to just have one app or publication, that is just not possible today. Maybe tomorrow?I agree with your sentiment around pop culture taking over our news. It’s sad, but sensationalist headlines capture eyeballs and in a world dependent upon advertising ads generate more revenue that subscription fees.

  19. John Revay

    Perhaps USV is looking at making am investment in such a product/app.Do I currently pay – NO ( assuming that might be Josh’s answer)Would I pay – perhapsApps I useGoogle news – all devices and PC/chromeApple new – iPhoneI have found my self looking for new news – Thirst for news.I have limited attention span for long form news

    1. Lilly Ninan

      Yes, that is what I believe. Fred has a knack getting ideas from the community and cheatingly monetizes the idea and keeping the whole money for himself.way not to go, Fred

      1. John Revay

        HUMMMI am not sure if Fred gets ideas from his community…I would expect that if there are investments that USV is thinking about…that he does informal poles and request feed back from group.I am good w/ that – no issue or problem w/ him making $$ for his investors – that is what they do!

  20. Armando Braun

    We came to believe that the Internet would make everything accessible… though that is not entirely true if the best content is locked behind year-long subscriptions. I think that being able to unlock stories on-demand, through a frictionless service, like many said here, would make the Internet live up to its promise.

  21. Jeff Jarvis

    From my book:In Adam Smith’s paradox of value, he wondered why, if water is vital to life and diamonds are not, diamonds are worth so much more than water. The pricing paradox of information presents a similar quandary: If information is so much more valuable to society than entertainment, why is it so hard to build a business — namely, journalism — around selling access to information? Journalism at its most useful is information-rich but information is quickly commodified. Entertainment, on the other hand, is unique and engaging and…receives greater legal protection under copyright than information does. We have conflated journalism as an information business with entertainment as an engagement business in large part because both are are built on “stories.”Information is less valuable in the market because it flows freely. Once a bit of information, a fact, appears in a newspaper, it can be repeated and spread, citizen to citizen, TV anchor to audience: “Oyez, oyez, oyez” shouts the town crier. “The king is dead. Long live the king. Pass it on.” Information itself cannot and must not be owned. Under copyright law, a creator cannot protect ownership of underlying facts or knowledge, only of their treatment. That is, you cannot copyright the fact that the Higgs boson was discovered at CERN in 2012, you can copyright only your treatment of that information: your cogent backgrounder or natty graphic that explains WTF a boson is. A well-informed society must protect and celebrate the easy sharing of information even if that does support freeloaders like TV news, which build businesses on the repetition of information others have uncovered. Society cannot find itself in a position in which information is property to be owned, for then the authorities will tell some people — whether they are academics or scientists or students or citizens — what they are not allowed to know because they didn’t buy permission to know it. Therein lies a fundamental flaw in the presumption that the public should and will pay for access to information — a fundamental flaw in the business model of journalism. I’m not saying that information wants to be free. I agree that information often is expensive to gather. Instead I am saying that the mission of journalism is to inform society by unlocking and spreading information. Journalism frees information.The rest: https://medium.com/geeks-be

  22. Antoine

    I already pay for a few, selected news sources. I don’t pay much though compared to how much “free” news I consumer on a daily basis.I would be willing to pay more, with the right model, a model that would give me access to multiple (unlimited?) news sources. Access to all types of news, pay as you consume.And I am a big Pocket user as well. Very convenient to archive any type of news and read offline. Love it.u

  23. Douglas Crets

    News should be like a chat or a conversation where you get a tip or a bit of insight that makes you make a next best move. News is often a bunch of pontificating and ignorance, and words spewed from a dais. Or, worse, it’s an overgeneralization of what a community is, to the point that nothing new is really delivered to the community, since it’s just reprocessing of generalized emotions and trigger points.

  24. Karen Cahn

    Yes, I would pay for news, and do with the NYTimes. I hate how internet news has evolved into clickbait and untrustworthy junk, so I proactively read the following sources for news: NYTimes, Washington Post, CNN and sometimes Vox, Mic, The Atlantic, The Guardian. I also really enjoy Medium for long form opinion pieces.

  25. Eric Satz

    There is no free. You pay with time or money. I pay for NYT and Economist. Then I follow people like those on AVC on Twitter to see what they are reading and thinking about. I have a few friends who are voracious posters of news on FB, but almost all of that is NYT. I don’t know what’s going on with WSJ but rarely do I see their links.My 17 year old son who reads a ton online gets almost all his news from Twitter and ESPN.

  26. Tadashiyara

    Retired, more time on my hands so long form reporting of more value. I pay for WSJ, NYT, Washington Post, Economist, Honolulu Star-Advertiser (gotta support my home state paper!).

  27. Ravi Shah

    As a millennial, I believe that most news can be found online. However, intellectual and in-depth background and opinion pieces are definitely something I would pay for.Blendle (https://launch.blendle.com) is a great example of a company that has capitalized on this opportunity.

  28. Brian Weisberg

    With so much content out there my opinion is that the consumer facing paywall should move to the aggregator. Publishers can then sell access to their content to the aggregators, but personally if I’m going to pay for news I don’t want to have to pay for multiple streams.As a Instapaper loyalist, I like the ability to save blog posts, articles, and other content for reading (or playing aloud via Bluetooth) when I’m ready to read (or listen).

  29. Brandon Burns

    For the benefit of society, quality news, delivered via a quality interface, should be free to all.Whether or not I’d pay for it is irrelevant. I’d pay for quality air to breathe if I didn’t have any. But that doesn’t make it right.

    1. Brandon Burns

      For the record, my sister pays for the NYTimes and I use her login, since NYT allows for that. I get almost all of my news on the NYT app, or via shared posts on Facebook.

    2. LE

      For the benefit of society, quality news, delivered via a quality interface, should be free to all.So are you saying that our tax dollars should pay for that access?

  30. Ana Milicevic

    I’ve always considered news a public service — my own consumption patterns mirror that heavily, as I mostly lean on BBC, PBS, and the AP feed for non-industry specific news.I pay for and would like to continue paying for analysis, commentary, in-depth reporting and specific channels (all digital and increasingly podcast/downloadable audio).

    1. sigmaalgebra

      > Public serviceThe US grants extraordinary, amazing, powerful, extreme privileges to the “press”.

  31. Crocodile Bungee

    I used to pay for news. Every day of my life, bar Sundays, from before I went to college, I bought the Times newspaper. (That’s the “London” Times to you folks.) And then newspapers became too slow and almost everything I read in the newspaper, I already knew about. I already, if you like, knew the news. Leaving aside the short-lived experiment that saw me actually buy the online crossword separately from the newspaper, that was the end for me and purchasing specific news outlets. Any of the online sources can tell me about events that are happening and we all choose one or more that suit our tastes and outlook. I scan the electric broadsheets of the UK – but not the Times because it has a firewall! – and I use Feedly for longer term stuff. I tried Pocket which is great but I never got around to actually reading anything.What we lose is access to the “middle pages” – the seasoned and rational comment, the editorial provided by trained and independent journalists. Or at least journalists whose opinions we know about and which are freely disclosed. We have replaced this with crowd-sourced chatter, like the self-affirming clamour from twitter. (A shared link btw isn’t any more true. Indeed shared error is becoming easier and easier to achieve and therefore harder to spot.)For instance – and I do not mean to argue the politics – what is more interesting? That Donald Trump is looming as a dangerous political experiment? Or that the Hollywood-assembled rich-enough-to-be-liberal elite think he’s crazy? Or that all over the world, rational people are rejecting professionalised politicians and their received opinions? Or how can this have come to pass? Or what has happened? Or at what age did we all overtake the earnings of our parents? And why is that age plummeting for a goodly section of established society but is certainly not doing so for everyone. Or why do I buy sophisticated components from faceless people in China thereby helping to impoverish my nearer neighbour? There is a whole raft of discussion that could take place under the general heading of “Donald”, and likewise a thousand subjects just as important but less topical.I used to know a proper ink-stained Editor. He said that when it was in print, it was in print forever and so it had better be right. That’s professional journalism. Perhaps a more useful question is: would you pay for journalism?

  32. obarthelemy

    I’d be more interested in paying for curation of my news.Right now I’m swamped by 500-ish RSS items a day, 90% of which I don’t read just swipe away, because half are dupes and the other half not worth my time. I’d pay a few bucks a month for a curating service that did deduping and a bit of weeding out.I’ve also signed out of Social stuff because the signal to noise ratio is even worse.As for news itself, It depends how much, and it depends on the quality. I’m an on and off subscriber to Ars Technica and The Economist. The issue is neither is sufficient by itself, so RSS remains my main source of news. I’m a Pro subscriber to Feedly…

  33. Guesty McGuesterson

    As my income has increased, I’ve become more interested in and willing to pay for news in order to get better signal/noise, remove ads, and yes, contribute toward better journalism.The main thing that stops me is that I don’t want to tie myself to a small handful of outlets where I’ve taken the step of subscribing. That would amount to climbing into a small filter bubble. I want the entire web as my menu of options, every day.To deal with ads I’ve adopted Google contributor, and that’s cool, but I don’t think it does anything for getting through pay walls. I wish it would.I’ve also tried blendle. I like their notion of one paying account to read a wide range of outlets but they seem to want to own the whole experience, making you read insider their own site rather than visiting the sites of the outlets themselves (and therefore often missing out on great visual and interactive elements they’ve stripped away).Just let me use the web like normal, with all my preferred ways of discovering, reading, and sharing, and let me pay for content without setting up a huge number of site-specific billing relationships in order to get there.Until then, to paywalls I say, “thanks for helping me narrow down my infinite options”.

  34. muratcannoyan

    I’m a Pocket and Instapaper user. I’m happy to pay for a good way to highlight, file and search. Medium is heading in this direction and I find myself using it more. I don’t currently but would pay for news if it has features that make it easy to do what I want with the information.

  35. Jason Hirschhorn

    Deep news and commentary for pay in industry verticals? Yes. General news? A hard sell. Curation with great UI and functionalities like Pocket? Yes. Funny, you and I sat next to each other on the way home from Paradise Island in the Bahamas when I was thinking about REDEF and your take was UI and functionality for a fee. On a freemium funnel to pay basis.

    1. Gautam Mishra

      “UI and functionality for a fee. On a freemium funnel to pay basis.” Would love to hear how http://www.inkl.com performs against this description because it’s exactly (and I do mean exactly) what we’ve tried to do.

  36. Cam MacRae

    Yes, I will gladly pay and subscribe to The Economist. I use their Espresso app for a summary of daily news and read the rest of the weekly rag as time permits.Unfortunately for Murdoch, et al. I don’t have a strong desire to know if a Kardashian switches the colour of her bikini bottoms.

    1. Adam Sher

      what if the color of her bottoms moved markets, and you could profitably trade on that info?

      1. Cam MacRae

        Taking a position on a Kardashian would make for a memorable day. I think it unlikely.

        1. Adam Sher

          Well, the matriarch run the most profitable parts of the family business (media) and they have clothing lines and other business ventures. It’s not impossible that they could group the business units together under a conglomerate and go public. How about them apples!Imagine that alternate reality!

          1. Cam MacRae

            On reflection the double entendre may have been too subtle.You do raise an interesting point, although I wouldn’t touch a media play with a bargepole.

  37. iggyfanlo

    Like the pre IP days, I feel I trade my attention for content. The incremental data piece and trail that I leave behind and is being well monetized should result jn a payment to me. That would balance the scales of the ad ecosystem.

  38. Heather Fields

    I don’t currently pay for news because I haven’t found the right curation tool. The closest thing I’ve found is PopUrls.com (where I jump directly to the Long Form Articles section). Online, I still proactively skim: NYTimes, CNN, HuffPo, BBC. I’ve recently added Vox, and like others enjoy Medium. All of this takes time. So a trusted curation tool would be worth my investment.

  39. jason wright

    I’m so pleased you touched on the question of what news is. Chomsky’s Manufacturing Consent nailed the political economics of the traditional news industry (the NY Times gets the Noam treatment).I would consider paying to not receive news information shaped by political and economic self interests.P.S. I know the Huawei Nexus 6P is an AVC crowd favourite phone, but did anyone buy the Copperhead OS version, and if you did how is it? Thanks.

  40. JLM

    .What is news these days?I look at it as current events and the first rough draft of history.In that regard, its chaotic presentation and sourcing is part of the hunt for the truth. Much of the first draft of history is so partisan and biased that it is only an insight into the “enemy” camp. Much of it is really wrong, lies (purposeful), and inartful.One has to read everything and pick and choose to find their own version of the truth.Once the first draft of history is written, it takes a long time for the developmental edit, the copy edit, the proof read to get the real story.Take as an example America’s involvement in the Middle East and its confrontation with radical Islamic terrorism — did it start with Jefferson, the Barbary Pirates, the USMC, and the “shores of Tripoli”? Or did it start with the Iraq War?If we look for confirmation of our own biases, it is easy to find a peddler to deliver on that proposition but if we think the first draft of history will require a few re-writes before it’s done, then you have to kiss a lot of frogs.I am appalled at the bias of the MSM but then when one considers their homogeneous background, it is only surprising it isn’t worse. That goes both ways.Bring on the chaos and sharpen the hedge clippers.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

    1. Chimpwithcans

      “If we look for confirmation of our own biases, it is easy to find a peddler to deliver on that proposition but if we think the first draft of history will require a few re-writes before it’s done, then you have to kiss a lot of frogs.” – – – – KABOOM!!!!! – truth bomb.

    2. Girish Mehta

      Once you start with the premise that:1.History was typically written by the victor2. A fair bit of history suffers from the “Great Man of History” phenomenon3.Most people write a book to make a pointand then read very exhaustively with that perspective in mind – you will slowly be able to arrive at “your” best understanding (you also realize that it is a journey that doesn’t end, and thats OK).

      1. JLM

        .I am currently reading Michael Hayden’s book, Wm Tecumseh Sherman’s memoirs, and Alexander Hamilton by Ron Chernow (second reading).Hayden’s book (only man to head the CIA and NSA and be a Lt Gen) is like eavesdropping on history. He is also an idiot with his totally unqualified pronouncements on foreign policy about which he knows less than nothing. He was a spy-technocrat, not a politician.Sherman’s book (America’s first war criminal and the arsonist of Atlanta, Columbia, et al, and the protector of Savannah) is an apology for his terrorism against the South and the Indians thereafter. Folks don’t know he was the first President of what became LSU. He made war against plantations, women, root cellars, springs, livestock, and, only then, the Confederates. He was a hater par excellence.Hamilton is the most exhaustive history of a man who has, essentially, been overlooked by American history because of how controversial he was. He was, arguably, the DJT of his time and yet he produced more written words than all the Founding Fathers combined. The book is 800 pages and exquisitely lays out the man who built the institutions which became America.I tell you this because each of these are original source or extremely well sourced books and each provides a unique view on history.None of them (except maybe Hamilton) are the last word. They just start the conversation. The other day I won $20 betting that Hayden had been head of both the CIA and NSA — the guy who bet me is a very well informed lawyer but he didn’t know that.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

        1. Girish Mehta

          Have you read Andrew Bacevich’s recent book on the War in the Greater Middle East ?

          1. JLM

            .No but it is on my radar. Do you recommend it?JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

          2. Girish Mehta

            I was going to ask you.

          3. Girish Mehta

            Something very different, but if you haven’t read, would recommend -“The Lessons of History” by Will Durant and Ariel Durant. Its a slim book that packs a punch…I re-read it once a year, and often walk away with something new.https://www.amazon.com/Less

  41. Tim Loonen

    I love the Blendle (https://blendle.com/) type apps where you get personalised recommendations based on articles you’ve liked (and paid for) in the past.Cost is at a minimum, and if you don’t like the article you get a refund.Great way to keep up-to-date on articles across different newspapers/magazines, and avoid getting tricked by click-bait.

  42. Adam Sher

    Millennial – Age 31.Until recently, I maintained a WSJ journal subscription (had for 10+ years). I’ve previously paid for Economist, FT and HBR. I would pay for news again. John Oliver spoke well about the importance of supporting news publications. Free platforms often cite or repost news from newspapers. The cost has to be borne somewhere. Many commenters said they would pay for an aggregator, and I feel the same way. I use Feedly and Medium as my goto sources. They’re both imperfect but are on the tracts I would eventually pay for. Most influencers cross-post to Medium, which enables Medium to pick up a lot of major news (from primary outlets).

    1. JLM

      .Totally off topic — 31 is the BEST age ever.At 31, you have experienced enough of life to get a taste for it but you are not yet required to know your life’s work or direction — 35 is when that has to happen.You may have shouldered meaningful responsibilities and, yet, you can still be Peter Pan.You can make as radical a change as you like and nobody will stand in your way and, yet, you could still be experimenting.Enjoy it and if you would give it serious consideration, I’d trade with you.I would love to tell you what I was doing and thinking at 31 but this comment is all about YOU.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

      1. Adam Sher

        Without having the perspective and wisdom of your age, I’d agree! I did take a big risk and start my own business at the beginning of this year. I do have some responsibilities, which center around my wife and toddler son. I also feel that I am not at my peak (physically, mentally, career-wise) and am thrilled about my future. It’s great to be me. BTW, I’ll be in Austin in November. I’d love to buy you a drink.

        1. JLM

          .If you can work BBQ into that sentence, we’ve got a winner. I am in all month unless the election goes wrong and I’m packing to move to Cuba?I don’t want to wait to live in a Communist country.Ping me.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

      2. Matt Zagaja

        Only 29 at the moment but this made me feel better this morning. Thanks.

        1. JLM

          .I built my first high rise office building at 29 and I remember looking into a hundred foot hole on Congress Avenue at Sixth Street thinking, “Holy shit. They think I know what I’m doing.”For 4 years, it was the tallest building in Austin.It was one of the best years of my life.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

          1. Adam Sher

            “Holy shit. They think I know what I’m doing.”I wonder why anyone takes me seriously. Don’t they know I’m a kid? Does that feeling change?

          2. ErikSchwartz

            Not yet…

      3. LE

        Plus at that age you still think 40 is light years away and you certainty don’t have to worry about old age.

  43. Richard

    Everyone would pay for news, if news publishers would stop trying to market it like they were in the newspaper business. News needs find you and if it were marketed with freemiums, scarcity and authority, people will pay for it.Look at the Facebook feed, it’s filled with advertisements (news) that content publishers “pay” for. And you bet there is an “ROI”, just ask that guy in his garage next to the Lamborghini.

  44. Lee Schneider

    I would certainly pay for news. I already do with the New York Times digital edition. I use the Times app and the Guardian app on iPad and phone. I also use Instapaper for its “read later” capability and Buffer to post to various accounts. Mobile? Not great. All the ‘filter” apps or aggregators are not as smart as the Twitter list I’ve built and use several times a day. This is a list of NYT, WAPO, WSJ writers and others who have a fascinating conversation going on among themselves about breaking news, politics, startups, tech and the intersection of all of that. So I’d have to say that the best news app for me something that I’ve built myself.

  45. Matt Zagaja

    When the New York Times first introduced their digital paywall they sent me an e-mail that said “Congratulations, you are in the top 1% of NYT readers by number of articles read and Ford has sponsored your subscription for the year.” After that I continued to pay for that subscription until I came to Harvard which provides a group subscription. I also subscribe to WIRED magazine. In paper because their iPad app is not that great. I think the two key things that get me to shell out money for a news source is they have to get the content right but also the technology. If the UX/app is awful, if the website is littered with popover ads, then I’m out.I use the Safari browser on my desktop and mobile because it has the easy share menu for shooting links to Facebook, Twitter, and E-Mail. In many ways I treat my Facebook feed as a news aggregator website/blog and people seem to enjoy this. The impetus being originally when the NYT paywall was released I wanted to link lots of articles so people could enjoy them for free.

  46. Erin

    John Oliver recently did a piece on the downward spiral of journalism due to ever tightening budgets. https://youtu.be/bq2_wSsDwkQ

    1. JLM

      .Notice that the world “journalism” is no longer in use?The disappearance of standards which begin to resemble journalism or what it once was is the reason why we are here today.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

      1. Erin

        Yeah I know- that piece is pretty depressing. Especially when that newspaper owner said “f***you” to one of his own journalists for asking a totally relevant question. It actually made me want to see Spotlight.

        1. LE

          I thought that was a fine movie but a bit overrated and overacted. I know the people in journalism loved it because they (as the movie characters thought) are doing god’s work or something like that. Reminded me a bit of the 48 Hours or Dateline stories where some detective spends 20 years of his life to solve a single murder case [1] and feels like he has made the world a better place.[1] My point is not that it’s not important but that people tend to put to much emphasis and pay attention to edge cases that interest them and blow them out of proportion to the actual impact on society in a country with 320 million people. That’s what the news business does. It makes the thing they think is important the focus of everything and ignores other things that are equally important in all areas of suffering and wrongs to the rest of us.

          1. Erin

            But it is god’s work! I mean I’m not a believer, but it’s a pretty sacred profession in my books.

          2. LE

            It’s not sacred at all. It’s a business like any other business. I remember when I was a kid and was shocked to find the teachers going out on strike or that police officers committed crimes. They have an agenda and do a job to earn a living (teachers and cops). While that doesn’t apply to everyone (because it would be like saying all doctors are in it for the money) it probably applies to a great deal of them, enough to spoil a large part of the profession.I don’t buy into any of that god’s work stuff.

          3. Erin

            Like, it’s really really important work that they do, if you prefer that lingo. But any job should be approached like that.

          4. JLM

            .That sanctity ended with Walter Cronkite.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

          5. Erin

            I mean everyone should approach their jobs like they’re sacred…. easier if you know your purpose in life, but not necessarily more exigent. Throwback from my religious days, we learned about godly people who brought “God’s presence” to their work washing dishes. Today as an atheist, I believe in doing your work with “presence”, as the Buddhists would define it. Intentionality…having the head, heart, and gut (action centre) in balance and in the game. Just because nobody’s topped Cronkite, doesn’t mean it can’t happen at some point.

          6. JLM

            .There is great dignity in work and man was made to work. You hit on something that I have lived. I recall washing dishes as a kid at a restaurant and making them perfect. I had the same sense of purpose as when I was building 50-story office buildings.When people are involved — like in the military — you are not only blessed with the presence of God in our work but you are literally entrusted with the live’s of God’s children.I remember having Notification Officer duty when I was a Lt/Cpt and having to go to someone’s home to tell them their son had been killed. You went with a Chaplain and a driver.It made an unbelievable impression on me.One night I was at the officer’s club with a bunch of irreverent lieutenants and we got on the subject. We were sitting around the pool drinking beer.The guys who’d served in the combat arms got it — infantry, armor, artillery, combat engineers — while the combat support and combat service support guys didn’t. They had never had to perform these kind of duties and they hadn’t seen the faces of mothers when they told them their sons were dead.As an entrepreneur, I made payroll every week for 33 years. At the beginning, it was hard and I could certainly have told folks to wait for two weeks but I never did. I never realized the importance of this until years later a guy who worked for me at 3 different companies told me it was THE reason he followed me from company to company.In business, I made a lot of decisions (particularly when I was running profitable companies) which were driven solely by the intention to do the right thing.One time, a boardmember told me he objected to my “generosity” with HIS money. I told him, without a moment’s hesitation, that if he felt like that he needed to cash in his chips or get another CEO. Years later, he reminded me of that and laughed. I never laughed as I was deadly serious.One of the big things wrong with America today is the cavalier way we disregard the dignity of work as it relates to the unemployed. When a man can’t take care of his family, it is not just about a paycheck, it’s about leadership and dignity.Most politicians don’t get that.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

          7. Erin

            I love knowing it’s possible to make payroll every week for 33 years. Great track record.Although! Invoking God’s name in miliary work makes me a little nervous, but I get the gravity and sacredness with which you dealt with life and death matters.While I’m redactioning, I would add “or a woman” to the “when a man can’t take care of his family” sentence. Women need to feel like dignified leaders too. ;)Nothing has shred me to pieces more than my mom’s disdain for my attempts at moving up Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. She was so giddy when i got my first job at McDonald’s, which crushed me because she has this thing about entry-level work, that it’s more honorable than fulfilling any fluffy “higher calling shit”. I mean, she’s worked hard all her life and was smart with what little she had, and has been able to retire relatively comfortably, so each to their own, but that phrase, “All work is dignified”… although great on its own, when wielded by her, it reminds me how I desperately wanted to be pushed to accomplish more, start a business, and how… just… giddy… she was when I failed and had to go back to my admin assistant work. When my dad was trying to start his own business, he’d be working away in the basement, and my mom would come home from work, set her purse down, put her hand on the railing leading to the basement, and call out in the shrillest voice known to womankind, “So! Have you applied for any REAL jobs today?”So what’s dignified work? Whether you’re forced to do it out of restrictive circumstances, or it’s what you want to do, you surely can’t wait for someone else to dignify it for you, or it’ll remain contemptible and laughable in your family’s narrative- or perhaps your industry or your country’s narrative for generations to come. You have to dignify it yourself with your own heart and mind and elbow grease.

          8. JLM

            .Great stuff. The influence our mothers have on us — good or bad — is incredible. My mom was convinced — which in turn convinced me — I could do anything which was all an act I came to know.I can hear your mom’s voice. What a great characterization. I may steal that. Hell, I WILL steal that.There is dignity in all work.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

          9. Erin

            Ha! I want to be that kind of mom. The believing all is possible kind.

          10. JLM

            .”You may be whatever you resolve to be.”Stonewall Jackson, instructor of artillery and natural philosophy (math), as written in the arch at VMI through which young boys enter the barracks to find themselves and emerge four years later as men to come to the aid of their country in times of peril.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

          11. Erin

            Oh! I think my ex’s nephew attends VMI and I remember being so impressed with what he was learning. For instance, how you put math in brackets after natural philosophy- I think VMI is a unique school in teaching how those two fields are connected. Which is, by the way, what I want to teach.

          12. Erin

            In fact, my ex and his nephew are hanging out this very week. Oh, serendipity.

    2. Adam Sher

      Side Note: Seinfeld looked the most animated and like he had the best time in the episode of CiCGC with John Oliver. It looked like they had so much fun!

      1. Erin

        Do you have a link?

          1. Erin

            Oliver was hilarious, although it was interesting how he kept his arms crossed for most of it. Seinfeld seems like he’s gotten a bit bitter with age. Not sure what it is.

          2. Adam Sher

            Interesting observation w/r/t crossed arms. I re-watched the episode to see how much he crossed his arms. My take is that his body behavior seemed normal and the crossed arms resulted from fidgeting around. I then watched 10 more episodes and Seinfeld was most at lease in this one. In the others, he was very much a host of a show but in this, both Oliver and Seinfeld looked relaxed. Lastly, I do not find the last show of Seinfeld’s that I attended live, to be very funny.

    3. Matt Zagaja

      The reason journalism was successful is that at the time before the Internet the newspaper was LinkedIn, AirBnb, BuzzFeed/Huffington Post, Facebook, and Comcast (they owned the distribution!) all rolled into one.

      1. Erin


  47. Erin

    The biggest issue for me isn’t getting my news early enough- I actually wouldn’t mind getting it late- like at 10 am so I can enjoy my morning and get the frog out of the way (you know-eat the frog first thing in the am.) Otherwise if I start clicking and scrolling in bed, I’m having multiple heart-attacks about what’s happening in the world and I have to recover before I even set my feet on the floor. As for paying for news- yes for the Globe and Mail (Canada) and NYTimes, but if someone from the “other side” wants to influence me, they can offer that content for free.

  48. Mario Cantin

    I would never pay for news. I used to get it free on the TV growing up, and only would pay for a newspaper when I was bored at a restaurant or something.Now, I get all the news I could ever want from my properly set up Twitter feed, routing any and all interesting articles to Pocket so they get added to the queue.

    1. Erin

      Oh yeah, news on the TV! >>moment of nostalgia<<

      1. Mario Cantin

        Lol, I know what you mean . Us kids back then were playing outside and not tethered to a smart device.

  49. Jeff Parkinson

    Tough to imagine a sustainable paywall model working long term for headline news. That includes the likes of the WSJ in its current form. I’m somewhat surprised that a company like The Skimm has garnered the attention it has. I’m sure their numbers are solid, but there is no shortage of sources from which to read condensed headline news, thus it’s hard to see how that model stands the test of time (of course no offense to the company and I know nothing about their long-term vision, so I’m merely commenting on the business as it stands today).Alternatively, content on the likes of Vice, The Ringer, or even Medium is unique and I’d definitely pay to read certain opinions/stories on those sites. I’m a big believer in the long-term viability of micro payments as a revenue model once the friction is removed from entering your bank acct or cc info (blockchain is the obv solution at this moment, but there will be others). That said, when you graph the supply/demand curve of revenue – ubiquity of readers and ad model vs smaller number of readers and a hybrid pay to consume plus ad model, it’s really hard to make the latter more lucrative. Furthermore, most of the private companies are venture backed, thus there’s a premium paid for user growth over necessarily optimizing for revs + profit.Overall, I think there’s an opportunity for paid content, but under a different model than an annual subscription to access an entire site.

  50. Rob Underwood

    The best algorithmic news reader I’ve seen was Zite. It did an excellent job in my experience of combining the best of my social feeds with learning from what I liked to deliver a personalized “newspaper”. Flipboard, who acquired, isn’t even close. It was my #1 go-to app across all my devices and I’ve yet to find a replacement.The said, this political environment has been thinking more of the value of spreading out a paper newspaper out on a desk or table. The implicit discovery mechanism – of an article catching your eye that you might not have otherwise read on a device (or been suggested to read by an algorithm) – in “old school” newspapers I’ve still not seen been matched.I think it’s important for voters and citizens (and I think informing and keeping up to date voters and citizens is a critical role of the media) to read a broad cross-section of news, not just what they are pre-disposed to read. I am hardly the first to bring this up, but I worry about long term echo chambers of confirmation bias from algorithmic reading.To the question at hand, yes I would pay for news, and especially long form, though if I’m honest with myself I wonder if idealize and romanticize long form more than I actually sit down and read a lot of it.

    1. Henry Chalian

      Exactly the first thing that came to my mind when I started reading Fred’s blog. Zite was beyond amazing. Flipboard I suppose is all nice and pretty, but I often forget that I have it.

      1. Rob Underwood

        Zite was the only time I have a similar feeling to the one i had with Google search the first time. It was just – perfect. And then they killed it.

  51. laurie kalmanson

    cable tv is disaggregating itself into pay-per-channel; news is at that point now.the invention of the telegraph made the associated press news coop possible; it could happen again for news.

  52. LE

    I pay for both the print WSJ (everyday) and the NYT (weekend). I actually like to read a print newspaper when I am eating dinner and get annoyed if I have to share the table with someone else (which usually doesn’t happen since I eat later than everyone else). I’ve been doing this since graduating college which was a long time ago. While I could easily read at the table from another device I like the print paper for this as it exposes me to things I would never find online and I want to know (as I like to say) “what the NYT finds important today”.WSJ I still enjoy although it has gone downhill since it has become a general interest newspaper.

  53. Salt Shaker

    Host of issues working against premium news:–A freemium model marginally works for some genres (e.g., music) but is a non-starter for news. Why? There’s too much free content avail today so the upsell and value prop to premium isn’t appealing. For example, the web version of all broadcast/cable news networks is free, as for each digital is still very much a secondary rev stream.–With the NYT, Seattle Times and other pubs that limit digital access to a certain number of FREE articles per month one only has to clear the cache on a viewing device to open the chasm. Upsell to premium isn’t necessary (although the above is a bit unethical.)–Further adding to the struggle, digital news outlets that are ad rev dependent must fight for every dollar against the likes of GOOG and FB, whose share of ad rev is off the charts.–Paying for content increasingly is becoming more and more generational, with younger people less inclined to do so.We pay for the NYT and WSJ but increasingly find neither sub to be “must have.” Both are in trouble. Print is experiencing a slow death for the past 20 yrs.

  54. Matt Zagaja


  55. Pointsandfigures

    I pay for the WSJ. I pay for our local business paper, Crain’s Chicago. Don’t pay for anything else. I’d pay for a local paper if it wasn’t for the shoddy reporting that goes on. Very very occasionally, there is something I want to read in the Trib or Sun Times that’s interesting and well researched, but mostly I can find all the info I want online for free. Bloggers are usually a lot more accurate and informed anyway.

  56. sachmo

    I’m in favor of paying for news, but at a Pandora subscription price (i.e. less than $10 / mo)… The NY Times subscription prices are way to high.I read news on a laptop browser, I find it relaxing to read the paper on a weekend morning or after work on a weeknight. I don’t care for mobile access or apps as much, but then as many in this community, I also tend to be a blog reader who values RSS – which is a dying breed.I think a huge problem with newspapers is that they are asking way too much in subscription fees. When many web services like gmail are free, and other far more consumed media content such as pandora / spotify / netflix all for ~$10/mo, why on earth would anyone pay ~$25/mo for a news subscription that would definitely get used less?I get that some people are willing to pay to support the newspapers, but the average person isn’t. The newspapers need to offer the national news for free, and then offer localized news / long-form content / op-eds for an under $10 monthly subscription.

  57. george

    Really great question. I purchase magazines and books but not daily news – there are just too many free news options available. I believe in paying for quality content but I would like to pay for what I read and not the whole periodical; the service model I prefer – buy subscription credit, apply it as I use it…that’s game-changing.

  58. Michael Brady

    This is a pretty nuanced topic. I think general headline news (event happened) is a commodity product. I do think that deep and thoughtful analysis and journalism is something that I would pay for (as well as investigative journalism). I see it being a case that you would subscribe to a particular journalism and get all their content and pay for it that way. It does seem like that those journalism write for the NY Times or Atlantic now but there is a lot of filler content though is as well that you do not want with their current subscriptions.

  59. Kevin Schultz

    I personally pay for the Washington Post & the New York Times and feel I get my money’s worth. I could see swapping the Post for the Wall Street Journal after the election is over. I’m not sure if I would pay for the local paper if I still lived outside of NYC.The key thing is that most ‘news’ is worthless. I’m paying for deeper journalism, not for what most local papers print.Lately I’ve been thinking that if news is a public good that people won’t pay for, isn’t the closest analog basic research? Why not run a journalist organization off an endowment like a research university?

  60. Steve_Dodd

    We pay for news every day as it always comes with ads. The issue is that NEWS has lost it’s meaning. If you mean unbiased, authenticated reporting, yes, that is worth paying for. However, in the new world of the internet, that has mostly been lost to attention seeking content. However, has NEWS ever been clean? Probably not. And the internet has just allowed it to become easier to broadcast the same old stuff so its value in the eyes of readers has diminished.

    1. sigmaalgebra

      > If you mean unbiased, authenticated reporting,For reporters who want to provide it and people who want to read it, this is the golden age: The reporters can have a Web site, WordPress blog, YouTube channel, etc., get their content out, and get ad revenue.E.g., as in my post here above, Newt Gingrich gets his video content out via Facebook. Simple. And, he gets to advertise the books and videos he and his wife do and get paid for.With this system, we are wide open to excellence in one million niche subjects for people who want such. Then, yes, there is the issue for each person finding the few dozen of that million they really like for their interests.

  61. sigmaalgebra

    Short answer to the question: No. Longer answer: Hell no. Still longer answer: I might pay them a little if they would leave the ink off the paper and shred it so that I could consider it for kitty litter. Bottom line answer: Maybe I would pay them if they would go away.Warning: Really big, important, rich, satisfied, secure, experienced, traditional, MBA-like, non-technical, mainline business executives and Silicon Valley information technology VCs won’t like this post! If they did like it, then I’d conclude I’d written a really awful post!I sense a poorly posed question:Why? My view is that news outlets such as ABC, CBS, NBC, MSNBC, CNN, HuffPost, NYT, WaPo, Salon, Fox, local newspapers, etc. are on the way out.Why? They have too much overhead, press too hard on traditional newsie shocking headlines to get eyeballs for ad revenue for their overhead, are determined to violate common high school term paper writing standards, just want to grab people by the heart, the gut, or below the belt, always below the shoulders, never between the ears, with fear, scandal, degeneracy, continuing themes of just made up deliberately deceptive nonsense, don’t have much in background, knowledge, basic smarts, information, abilities at meaningful writing, abilities at making good use of data, or anything to contribute, have no interest in objectivity, are nearly always severely biased in some ways, apparently are commonly sources of paid propaganda, and, in general, are really pushing their own agenda instead of anything for the readers. To paraphraseOther than that, they are really good sources of information. I want you to know that.What is replacing such old newsies? Sure, from 10,000 feet up, the Internet.Example 1.E.g., sometimes Newt Gingrich has some things to say. Well, sometimes now he just sits in front of a camera and lets Facebook distribute the video. I get to hear what Newt wants to say, and I don’t have to listen to total #$%^&*() from the newsies as they interrupt Newt, talk over him, cut him off, try to destroy good information and create made up controversy, etc.So, compared with the newsies, just Newt and Facebook video are less overhead, higher quality content, and dirt cheap.Might call Newt’s example a case of dis-intermediation, “cutting out the middle man,” or disruption.Example 2.Supposedly there are 1+ trillion Web pages on the Internet. And no doubt the content continues to grow, like weeds, rabbits, an exponential, whatever analogy that seems appropriate.So, if we are not going to take all our news from the formerly highly revered, always highly self-esteemed NYT, never useful, only thinly hiding their real views far to the left to Karl Marx, etc., then we need some other ways to select from the trillion.So, one example is, right, Drudge Report.So, for that example, let’s talk overhead again, or, more appropriately, overhead per page view.(A) Now for the NYT, they have a huge building in Manhattan — lots of overhead.Page views? I can’t think of anyone actually able to read who would actually read that NYT totally made up, cooked up, brain-dead, deliberately deceptive, disgusting, despicable, destructive, dangerous, up chucked sewage. So, overhead per page view is really expensive.(B) For Drudge Report, I just looked and sawVISITS TO DRUDGE 8/14/16022,665,733 PAST 24 HOURS 915,346,107 PAST 31 DAYS 9,292,495,879 PAST YEAR So, lots of page views.Find some ad networks; use them to help running a few ads per page; get anything like common ad revenue; and get quite a lot of revenue per dollar of overhead.Overhead? IIRC, basically it is just Drudge, maybe in a hammock, on a beach, with a laptop. Or maybe in hot weather like now, he is far enough north in Canada to have some really nice weather, has his laptop, looks out on some gorgeous scenery, gets a local chef to bring him a nice, cold lobster salad, a Caesar salad and some exceptional Ravioli, a little Tornadoes Rossini, some Coquilles Saint-Jacques Parisienne, a baguette with some high end, sour cream butter, has a nice dessert, then gets some exercise to work it off, etc.So, in overhead per page view, Drudge totally knocks the copies of Karl Marx, F. Scott Fitzgerald, Betty Friedan, Marcel Proust, Joyce Carol Oates, etc. out of the hands of NYT newsies.Besides, no one has to believe Drudge; that is, he doesn’t need much credibility. Indeed with only a little credibility he is way ahead of the newsies at the NYT. Why? Because for the actual content, Drudge just links to other sites while the NYT exposes daily for all the world that they have less credibility than the grunts of a reptile.Simple.There’s no reason there can’t be other sites similar to Drudge.E.g., as the NYT goes out of business, their newsies could set up sites to replace the NYT. So, they could have a site for each of the latest in the political economy of Karl Marx, politically correct social justice worriers, the peaceful religion of Islam, women’s studies including radical feminism, Black studies including Black Lives Matter, why the US should give all its money to the poor people in Africa, the threat of severe global warming and catastrophic climate change caused by evil humans sinning against the Great Green Earth God, art no one cares about, cooking recipes that have no chance of working, women’s clothes no woman could wear, etc.Of course, what Drudge is doing is just a first, simple case of helping people find Internet content his audience will like. Here apparently Drudge is borrowing from what he learned in the news business.Google is another approach to letting people find Internet content and based on an old library card catalog subject index.And there can be other approaches.One point in common can be high numbers of page views per dollar of overhead.Example 3.There can be video newsies, each with some video cameras, some video editing software, and a YouTube channel.Example 4.From people with something to say that people want to hear, there can be individual Web sites or YouTube channels.E.g., there is Khan Academy (I don’t recommend it as a way to learn calculus), course lectures at MIT, Web sites of politicians, government organizations, companies, etc.Bottom LineYes, the news is important. And, yes, entertainment. And information, the full variety of it, more generally. For that the main infrastructure is from PCs, software, the Internet, WordPress, YouTube, etc.So, there will be many new instances of news sources, with very low overhead, and sometimes with some huge number of page views and dollars of ad revenue per dollar of overhead.The big, old newsie organizations are going away.

  62. Maria G. Manes

    Long form content for sure. Pocket is genius and I can’t leave without it. And I absolutely pay for news (WSJ and NYT) gladly (online and paper) as well as use free content regularly.

  63. awaldstein

    Doing the same exercise over and over again day after day may work for some but it flies in the face of all science to do so.Do what works for you and I”m curious to know what your approach to nutrition is?

  64. Jonathan Washburn

    I would (do) pay for content. I agree with your interactive / social experience comments, which run counter to paid as that diminishes sharing with ease. I haven’t thought about resolving that conflict.There are some people I share with that I would pay for the share–e.g. I send a link to a family member who reads it, I would pay for that content again. But for promiscuous sharing a la Twitter that wouldn’t be workable. The “10 free articles this month” deployed by some publishers seems effective for sharing to non-subs. I think many variations on that will be explored by publishers.Re: ui, I don’t care about the “on-ramp” ui medium — as long as both curation and discovery are surfaced well. It could be app, email, web. Once the sharing begins, it should be open web in its ability to jump in and follow the thread across platforms and publishers.Curation has been fairly well done, discovery not as well yet. Lately I would like to see an ability to add contrary diversity to my streams–in an accessible, but not integrated way. I’d like to be able to dig more into a topic to learn contrary pov, but have it on the side so it’s there to explore when I have the time/space for an open mindset.

  65. Susan Rubinsky

    Just some qualitative input.This summer, my 19 year old son who is home from college, read almost every single copy of the NYT Magazine in print because I left it out on the kitchen table on Saturday mornings next to a cup of tea for him.It all started by accident when I left it on the kitchen table the first weekend he was home. He admitted a couple of weeks in that he would never have sought it out online. Maybe this is because it’s not really packaged like a magazine in the digital version.Or, maybe it’s nice to actually hold a glossy magazine every once in a while (I sent him a link to a Chuck Close article and he actually got off of his computer, came downstairs and asked me for the NYT magazine when I was done so he could read it in print rather than read it online).As a comparison, he rarely reads Popular Mechanics or National Geographic in print (though he loves the print maps) but if Vice put out a glossy, I’m betting he might read it.Personally, I am in love with National Geographic’s online content. It is very different from the magazine. I think of them as compliments to each other. (I have the subscription that includes the magazine and access to digital). I think news organizations are struggling with how to get the complimentary thing going.

  66. Drew Meyers

    “Almost everyone told me that they value “long form news content” but not “headlines.” “Yup, but it seems the masses say otherwise — at least based on clicks/action.

  67. Andu @ Widgetic.com

    If the news would be more in the format of Inside.com (inside tesla is a good channel), or qz.com’s app probably. The way the news is now, I can’t even stand reading the f.. articles in their free format. They’re shit most of the times.So it feels like what we’d pay for eventually is either per articles (Blendle) or for the curation of the news. At least as of today.

  68. creative group

    William Mougayar:We may never noticed but is the MOD designation new beside your name?Is censorship in full effect on AVC blog?

    1. Cam MacRae

      William and Shana have been mods for many years. All is in order. Relax.

      1. creative group

        CAM MacRae:We usually access the AVC blog via email to disqus. When viewed in desktop it shows mod. We just seen it for the first time. We have viewed this blog for over a year. Just decided to interact.Thanks for the notification.#Unapologetically&UnequivocallyIndependent#ProudIndependent

  69. Toby

    I am always surprised that anyone should think the ‘news’ should be free. Quality journalism costs money. Someone has to do the leg work involved to find the story, do the interviews etc. One possible solution is being developed by https://tapview.com/publishers – basically readers pay per article based on the price set by the publisher (anywhere from $0.10 upwards per article). It will allow access to multiple publications without requiring monthly subscriptions

    1. Lilly Ninan

      when news happens for free, publishing them should be free as well. no monetization here.

    2. creative group

      Toby:There part we disagree with, which is that what some organizations are attempting to pass off as Journalism is just actually copying and rewording articles published from a central source. (AP, Reuters, etc) Then getting it wrong. No proof reading or checking sources to confirm if the report was accurate. Too many misrepresented news reports to list.

  70. Robert Holtz

    To me, news GATHERING is the high order bit and I’m willing to pay for it. To me, aggregating news is only marginally useful as there are so many clipping services and alert bots out there that are free or so cheap I consider them free. Aggregation is where ad placement and impression dollars should be generated. I do not agree with the sentiment that news should be free. In a world where all the news is free, we will quickly find that the only news we really get will be propaganda posing as news which there is already way too much of in the world. Real journalism costs money and educated consumers of news know, respect, and are willing to pay for quality. That all being said, I welcome new models that subsidize the expense for good news across aggregators, distributors, and innovative purveyors of news so I can get news cheaper or free wherever possible.

  71. creative group

    Contributors:Are you an independent thinker or guided by emotional and other commonalty with others that motivate your thinking and habits?We can say reviewing many posts there are many who comment or upvote with the crowd. We can honestly acknowledge our independent views are not the norm and can rub a talking point person to the opposing side. We also can critique without inherited biases based upon the facts first. (Facts as you know them shape opinions) (You are entitled to your opinions but not the facts)JLM has the ability to have an opposing view and still upvote on what he accepts and agrees with. He has upvoted Progressives also. Stop upvoting with the herd but your mind. (Being very sarcastic)JLM you do have a collective group that would upvote you if you (hypothetically) shot someone in the middle of New York City).

  72. Scott Barnett

    Thanks for remembering. We’re still going after it 🙂

  73. Gautam Mishra

    Great question, thanks Fred.TLDR: Yes I would, and I believe more will as time goes on.1. Would you pay for news…. right now?The NYT paywall went up on 17 March 2011. Since then >50% of publishers have started charging online. So willingness-to-pay for news has grown and will continue to. But it will take time to change views on a content set that has been free for 20 years.2. Fragmentation <> decreased concentrationYes, one can get news from social media, apps, or ‘pundits’ who rewrite stories, but original research and reporting is produced by a declining number of journalists. As they go out of business, ubiquity / fragmentation will decrease. i.e., There’ll be less to rewrite / republish / redistribute. It’s not unlike the CDO bubble where the derivative market imploded when the primary market disappeared.3. News fundamentals are strongAs readers we have less free time, more information to absorb, more partisan voices to filter out, and more complex issues to unravel. The fundamental need for news has never been greater. Angry US voters support Trump because no one is listening. Beguiled UK voters support Brexit on the back of false promises. Climate change is debated as if it’s a matter of opinion. The need for transparency is greater than ever. So on fundamental principles the need for news is strong.4. Product need <> business modelThe case for ad-funded news is terminal – FB and GOOG capturing huge share, blockers, programmatic, viewability, site speed, fragmentation, falling ad CTRs….So publisher reliance on reader revenue WILL increase. So far this shift in focus has been limited, but will eventually have to increase. For example, most still have RSS feeds that generate near-zero value in exchange for headlines and thumbnails. There is no business model here that makes sense any longer so over time RSS feeds will decrease in number. The same is true for third-party distribution via FB Instant Articles, Apple News, etc which have failed to deliver a different outcome / future for publishers.Similar studies in music found that reducing free access contributed significantly to the uptake of paid digital music. So a similar question 10 years ago would have been “would you pay for music”? The responses (I suspect) would have been similar too.5. Price and UXiTunes shifted the perceived ‘price’ of a song from FREE to 99 cents. This was so much lower than the reference point ($15 / CD) that readers were willing to pay.But iTunes also provided two critical UX solutions – the ability to quickly get to ANY song, and the ability to create digital ‘mixed tapes’ i.e., playlists. Their solution to both these problems was far better than free alternatives.Like iTunes, news needs a low uniform price for the model to shift away from FREE, and paid products need to provide a better experience than free alternatives. This is eminently doable as the quality of free news coverage declines.

  74. Aashay Mody

    I would definitely pay a small monthly amount for news IF it had the following qualities:1. Personalized (and I mean truly personalized based on my history of reading, not just by asking me to put myself in pre-determined buckets like a lot of apps do)2. Summarized (a quick summary of what the article entails to help me decide whether to read in detail)3. Social (ability to quickly and easily share with friends, like minded-individuals and also see what they’ve shared)4. Cross-platform (not limited to certain sources or forms of content)I’m a fan of Quartz’s daily brief delivered to my inbox which does #2 pretty well.I guess Facebook does #3 but its not focused enough on news per say but rather all posts from me/my friends.I haven’t yet come across anything that does #1 and 4 really well.

  75. ShanaC

    I’m very millennial, I’ve done and liked audience development, and I have an on again off again news addiction With preferences!So, my answer is: it’s worth an amount when I figure out if it is still worth something a day later, a month later, and best case, a year laterCase in point : nytimes this weekend, the magazine, on the middle east, will probably be valuable in a variety of ways for the next year at least.Lots of stuff on techmeme that’s also in the times, probably not

  76. Kashif

    Most will agree to pay for the signals, not for the noise that consists most of the news.

  77. Clint Schaff

    I do pay for news, and we all do in one way or another. Even the free stuff we pay for in terms of advertising intrusion, commercial impact on news coverage, etc. There’s always a price.I’ll offer a question… I’m starting a job soon as head of strategy for a publishing group.***Anyone have any resources/articles to share, inspired by Fred’s question, on how news orgs can maintain/increase revenues in today’s environment?***

  78. Andrew

    What did your grandma say?

  79. awaldstein

    We don’t eat or spend enough time together.European tapas–10 Bells in LES or the new Rouge Tomate in Chelsea are the ones I insist to make time to hang with me.It is no secret that the best places for natural wine also have some of the best and more healthy food in the city. Not always but often.

  80. eliasmoubayed

    A millennial is ‘a person reaching young adulthood around the year 2000’, so easily in their 30’s today, whereas your kids are likely younger? When I was a teen or young adult I absolutely wouldn’t have paid for news. With music you bought some albums and then borrowed others from friends and taped them. That aspect of behaviour hasn’t changed one bit.

  81. TeddyBeingTeddy

    I’m bearish on news in general, not a payer. Like James Altucher says, “don’t read the news, it’s too depressing”. And like Gary Vanyerchuck (sp?) says, there’s too much PR intertwined with news to make it sincere (in so many words). So I leave my only news to various podcasts, NPR, and great blogs like yours.

  82. Peter Raulerson

    I pay for NYTimes and Wall St Journal and Harvard Business Review and my local newspaper (Seattle Times) but I also follow 100+ blogs. I read your posts and other blogs I follow in Feedly, a feed reader that runs on my iPhone and also in modern browsers like Chrome on Macs and PCs. So I straddle the UI and “paid source” camps. One huge benefit for me, for using a feed reader, is that I can easily “save” and “share” interesting articles by clicking on options in Feedly to save an article to Evernote or to email it. You can’t do that with print pubs or TV news or radio.

  83. TamiMForman

    My husband and I get two newspapers — ink on dead trees — delivered to our house every day. The NYT and WSJ — we get digital with our subscription and I like reading the Times on my phone on the way to/from work. If my husband had his way we’d also get one of the tabs, but at some point it’s just too much newsprint. He was a newspaper reporter once upon a time so he’ll never give up the paper … He has noted that the only other person on our floor who gets the newspaper daily is 85.

  84. Anthony Chan

    I will be glad to pay for distraction free news i.e. no ads between paragraphs, pop up after 20 secs etc. I am also a big fan of pocket for the same reason. I save any news or articles on Pocket for the distraction free experience.

  85. Vlad Barash

    I would most certainly pay for news. I like the idea of Blendle, not sure if it will catch on with the masses, but I believe if people don’t pay for news then it will continue spiraling into what we’re currently seeing: click bait, ads everywhere, poor quality journalism.

  86. Paul Sanwald

    I’m 39 and pay for the NY Times and Economist digital subscriptions. I get a lot of value out of both, but particularly the Economist, which I read cover to cover almost every week.Their obituary editor, Ann Wroe, is one of my favorite writers ever. Some of my favorites which I feel are particularly well written:Prince:http://www.economist.com/ne…Joan Rivershttp://www.economist.com/ne…Marvin Minskyhttp://www.economist.com/ne…

  87. bobwyman

    Ask instead: “What kind of news do you or would you pay for?” What you’ll find is that a very large percentage of people are willing to pay for some kind(s) of news — due to intense personal or professional interests. But, not all news has equal value to all readers. One reader, Mary, might pay $10/month for some specialized kind of news but only be willing to pay $1/month for some other kind of news. Another reader, Bob, might have an opposite willingness to pay based on kind. Each of Mary and Bob might also have a budget that says that no matter what news is available, $15/month is the most they are willing to pay for news of all kinds. Some people will have larger news budgets and others smaller news budgets.The question then becomes: “How do you maximize news revenues across all products?” Well, the obvious way to maximize revenue, given the example above, is to bundle the first kind of news with the second. Thus, Mary and Bob, would each be willing to spend $11/month on your total news bundle even though they have different but overlapping interests. This means $22/month revenue from the two of them combined rather than only $10/month from each of them separately if each kind of news had been individually priced at $10/month. (Without the bundle, they would each only buy one of the two news products.) Note: Bundling the news, in this case, doubles the potential readership for each kind of news while multiplying the revenues by 2.1…Clearly, by adding in others kinds of specialized news, you should be able to drive the average perceived value of the bundle, for a large number of readers with different but often overlapping interests, to the $15/month which might be the average “total news budget” for the largest number of readers. If you pick the “harvesting target” for the average reader correctly, you’ll harvest more revenue by offering the bundle than if you tried to create tiers that tried to maximize revenues from those willing to pay more than the average maximum budget. (i.e. Many people would pay $15/month while a small number would pay $1,500/month for the right news.)The third interesting question is: “Now that you’ve maximized aggregate revenue, how do you distribute the revenues between the news providers?” Given the example, one might expect that each news provider should get an average of $11.00 of revenue from Mary and Bob combined, but that math isn’t so easy when you’ve got large numbers of providers and many readers. A variety of algorithms can be used to distribute the revenue. The most effective will probably be based on observed reading patterns. In other words, at the end of every month, first assign some revenue to the bundle provider and then divide the remaining revenue among the publishers based on empirical evidence of readers’ interest in the content. (i.e. web traffic). Note: Some news has lower value but is read by all. For instance, national news or sports. Other news has low readership but high value to those that care about it. So, you probably want to discount payments to publishers based on volume. Content read by everyone should be paid less per reader than content that is read by only a few.As the bundle begins to include a large variety of news types, you’ll find that some of the news has little or no value to some of the readers. But, this is ok. As long as a new type of news has value to any reader, its inclusion in the bundle maximizes aggregate revenues and readership with no real increase in cost.You’ll recognize that this is similar to the “Cable TV” model and you might argue that pay-per-view or menu-based payments would be more efficient. But, that would be wrong since anything that provides less than all the news to all the readers ends up failing to maximize total aggregate revenues.

  88. Nitin Khanna

    I paid once for my RSS reader – bought Fever second hand from someone else for half the price. I host it on Redhat’s OpenShift service for free (I was hosting it on CenturyLink’s AppFog service for free before they killed the grandfathered free service). I add RSS feeds to it almost daily and use twitter to catch interesting items and then use Fever’s search to find and read them.What I’m saying is – I’ve paid for my news. I’ve paid for the UI and I’ve paid for the experience. I won’t pay any more than that. News media has been pushing ads and ways to show ads and gaining massive footholds in that, so they (a lot of them) don’t deserve my money.

  89. Brad Lindenberg

    I think the theSkimm’s Skimm Ahead app which is a $3/month download, with a mostly female audience proves your point that women are prepared to pay for news.

  90. Doc Searls

    Sometimes when I give a talk in the U.S., I ask the crowd, “How many of you listen to public radio?” Given the kind of crowds I talk to, nearly all raise their hands. Then I ask, “How many of you pay for it?” About 10% of the first group raise their hands. Then I ask, “How many of you would pay for it, if it was easy?” Many more hands go up. Then I ask, “How about if it was easy and the stations turned off those long twice-a-year beg-a-thons?” Many more hands go up.My point: it should be easy to pay for news, but it’s not. If there was an easy way, a lot more money would flow.But there is nothing especially networked and leveraged about any subscription or payment system out there. Instead, every news outlet has its own separate, silo’d and complicated come-on and system. Other independent approaches, such as Patreon, are also centralized.A few years back, when we started ProjectVRM <http: projectvrm.org=””>, we convened a meeting of public radio stations and networks at Harvard’s Berkman Center to talk about testing an approach that would make it super-easy for any listener to pay whatever they wanted for whatever they liked, on their own terms and in their own ways, rather than in the silo’d and separate high-friction ways required by every separate public radio station.Couldn’t do it, because all the stations jealously guarded each of their own deeply entrenched and rationalized systems for raising money. Such is also the case with all the news organizations of today as well.But the system we came up with back then is still there for the taking: free and open source. It’s called EmanciPay, and it’s here: http://cyber.law.harvard.ed… . Is it still too early to make it happen?

  91. Peter Meyer

    Sorry to come late to the party here, but I’m a veteran journalist (40 years, not counting high school!) who has worked some of the big media companies. I have had the privilege of living through several generations of media (my first book was typed on my dad’s 1940s Royal and I was Time’s first internet news editor!) and I am bullish on the news business’ prospects for the future — once we get used to constant living in the future! The dust will settle (every ten seconds!) and people will pay for the good stuff. This is why I have started non-profit to teach journalism to kids in underserved school districts and neighborhoods. Much like the folks teaching code to kids, our kids desperately need to learn how to research, report, and write. You can see a wonderful short commentary (a minute 30!) by Paul Tudor Jones on our website http://www.schoollifemedia…. about why everyone who wants to be successful needs to take a journalism class. We need to bring this to our schools. Thanks Mr. Wilson for raising the question.

  92. Eric Satz

    And you get the Sunday times early digitally so you can cheat ahead! I’m on this same plan.

  93. JLM

    .Pro tip: Shred it. Mix it with used motor oil. Put it in a steel container. Use it to light logs in the fireplace.Or, use the gas log lighter?JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

  94. LE

    NYT good deal is so they can continue to sell papers and keep circulation figures so that they can charge a premium for a print ad which generally results is loose track-a-bility as to actual impact. Plus they then get distribution for those NYT Style magazines where they can sell high priced image ads for brands that sell to the people that live in Staten Island. [1] If the print edition were to go out they’d be like the rest of the crybabies and would have to gut their overpriced content creators. Who value the fact that they work for a preeminent newspaper. Of course people used to also think much of themselves in radio jobs until TV came along and a new generation didn’t buy into that anymore. [2][1] Just to see if anyone is reading my comment.[2] And their aunts had died.

  95. Anne Libby

    Though I’m always kind of disappointed when the paper actually arrives. Old news, because I’ve read it online…

  96. Eric Satz

    I still love holding the paper and flipping the pages. Certain sections just more appealing in print imo. And I never have time to read it all in advance.

  97. Donna Gaglano

    If millineals were to pay for news, they would rather do drugs than buy news.Paying to read news is harmful to the society.

  98. Salt Shaker

    Exactly! Wish the NYT would flag online what articles are “day of” and what’s not. By the time Sunday rolls around and I get the hard paper delivered I’ve discovered, disappointedly, that I’ve already read a big chunk of it. A perception of redundancy hurts their value prop!

  99. JLM

    .I knew him sort of well. His daughter, Robin, was a nemesis of mine in the Austin developer v environmentalist wars. I rented her soul without her knowing it. Not very expensive in the end.Why the airport?You should tell people you’re Dan Rather’s love child. Of course, that could entail long periods of nauseousness. No disrespect to Mom.Belay that, Gridley.JLM

  100. JLM

    .Here’s some Old School Texas baloney with your pal being honored.http://www.texasarchive.org…It gives you a great idea of how wild and uncouth Texas was once upon a time. I moved here in 1979.The Headliners Club was the haunt of people like Walter Conkrite and Dan Rather, etc.This is the nexus of politics, business, University of Texas, and the Texas Longhorns.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

  101. LE

    she was a hot woman in her day.Well now you have to post a picture so we can all decide that, eh?

  102. JLM

    .BTW, I’m an Admiral in the Texas Navy myself. I have the certificate and cufflinks to prove it.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

  103. LE

    Yeah I used to read that all of the time until they brought in several different opinions way of doing it. That gutted what made it fun to me (and my wife when we would discuss). It was like “here is the story, what do you think the ethicist will say and what do you think he should say and what do you say”.As far as left wing and all of that they are experts at creatively hiding their bias to the left so it appears fair and balance. The nuance and creative execution is what makes it unbalanced.For example if my wife wants me to do something that I don’t want to do (hypothetically) the worse thing would be to reveal that I don’t want to do it. What I can do is appear to want to do the same thing and appear agreeable (such as going to a party in Staten Island or a camping trip) and then try to find a creative way to get out of it. This doesn’t actually happen of course. But it’s the way I would go about it if she wasn’t 100% under my thumb. (See [1] in my other comment).In other news note print NYT cover for Sunday….

  104. LE

    By the way I like your brand of humor way better than I like that other guy that Fred thinks is funny.

  105. Salt Shaker

    The NYT is currently toying w/ the idea of eliminating the Sunday Mag. (Agree the old Ethicist column was better, but thankfully they’ve moved away from using multiple analysts in one column.)The NYT magazine should be a killer, and it isn’t! Way too verbose and the writing increasingly has become somewhat elitist and less appealing to a mainstream audience. On a continuum, IMO it should feel more like New York mag than the New Yorker, creating a nice balance w/ the rest of the paper’s harder edge.

  106. LE

    And when your on the street, depending on the street I bet you are definitely in the top three…Better looking than an air hostess in the 60’s?https://www.youtube.com/wat

  107. JLM

    .It takes some time to become indoctrinated and this guy is right on the edge. A couple more years and he’ll be there. Believe me, there is a process and an indoctrination.I wasn’t born here but I got here as fast as I could, since 1979.It is great fun to drive around Texas and see our history — the Alamo, the Chisholm Trail, the UT Tower where the gunman killed all those people, Balmorhea Springs, the Davis Mountains, and the hanging trees.Two corrections — Ted Cruz is not really part of Texas, yet, and may never be. He’s some crazy Canadian Cuban who is getting ready to be defeated in 2018. My Congressman, Mike McCaul, is going to run against him. His wife’s Dad is a billionaire.Jack S Blanton came to one of my grand openings (Tx Commerce Plaza in Corpus Christi — founding home of Whataburger).With him were Ben Love (Chairman of Tx Commerce Bank and who had a bank in the building), Jack Crosby (the best entrepreneur and deal guy I ever met) and Jack M.Ben Love introduced the speaker, Pres Jerry Ford, who said, “You’ve got a winning hand when you start out with three Jacks.”The big museum at UT (largest collection of Old Masters in the world) is the Blanton Art Museum. He wrote one check to pay for it.If Texas were not real and somebody made it up — people would say, “Nah, that’s not believable.”That big border with Mexico and the Rio Grande Valley is a big deal nobody else in the country gets. There is a war going on down there and it IS part of Old Mexico. You have to see it to believe it.Houston, San Antone, Dallas, Austin, Fort Worth, El Paso, Arlington, Corpus Christi, Plano, Laredo, Lubbock, Garland, Irving, Amarillo, Grand Prairie — all 200,000 or more people and growing.Forty cities with more than 100,000.It is a big damn place and it is a comfortable place. BBQ and TexMx.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

  108. JLM

    .Ben is still alive. He was the youngest Speaker of the House and got caught in a scandal. If not, he would have likely been President. You have never met a bigger hustler than BB. Not in a bad way.He and John “Big Jawn” Connally had a big real estate development outside of town called Barton Creek. Huge.I remember going to watch Big Jawn speak when he ran for President (Democrat converted to Republican, Gov, Sec of Navy, Sec of Treasury).They got caught in the downturn and lost it to be picked up by Freeport McMoran (Jim Bob Moffett). I helped his company get some approvals for the land and was an early member of Barton Creek Country Club which now has 4 courses.They were a couple of real operators and Texans.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

  109. awaldstein

    Nutrition is the largest part of the deal.How and what you eat is a new science that pays back bigtime.

  110. LE

    I didn’t know they were considering eliminating it. (I guess no more pile up in the bathroom).That can only mean one thing. They can’t sell enough advertising (at the right price) to justify printing it.As far as the rest of what you said all true. They have their creative head up their ass in some cases. You remember how much attention they gave to when they redesigned the magazine along with the type font and all of that? I know about that type of thing (used to be in the business) but even I know that normals don’t give two shits about the kerning on the masthead. It was like their own party in their head.I wonder how much they reach out to readers and gather their opinion. Not the people who write to them but the people that don’t.

  111. Salt Shaker

    They’re also thinking of doing away with the Metro section. Yeah, the model no longer works for them. Rev is shrinking like a frightened turtle (Seinfeld line). The mag’s redesign is atrocious. “Hey, let’s jam as many words on a page as we can, aesthetics be damned.”Still think the NYT is one of the best reads out there. Maybe they’ve taken the liberal bent a tad too far, same as the WSJ, the opposite way, but partisan journalism is de rigueur.Which begs the Q, what exactly is the def of journalism these days? It spans a very wide spectrum, with pop culture increasingly gaining prominence.

  112. Salt Shaker

    “Belay that, Gridley”Ha, I was on the USS Gridley last week. Fleet Week in Seattle. Wanted to thank the boys for their service. Also checked out a Marine transport ship. Most of the Marines did 2-3 tours in Iraq/Afghanistan. Interesting comparison between the Navy boys and Marines. Def wouldn’t want to fuck with the latter.Purchased a t-shirt for my uncle. Dyed-in-the-wool Marine. Will be 90 this year. Fought in the Pacific in WWII on the West Virginia. Ship was hit pretty good. Didn’t talk about any of this stuff until, well, only recently. Scary shit.Bless those guys.

  113. JLM

    .The horror of the fighting by the Marines (and the Army but mostly the Marines) was censored for years.The Commandant at VMI when I was there was a Colonel named Buck Buchanan who’d been a Marine enlisted man during WWII and then an Army officer after attending VMI after the war.Fought in WWII as a Marine and Korea and Viet Nam as an Army officer.One of the finest and smartest men I ever met.He was a favorite of mine. Part of the ritual of VMI is you get to meet men who have done shit. I remember having dinner at his quarters and his wife left and we were having coffee and he got talking about the campaigns he’d fought in as a Marine.It made the hair on the back of my neck stand up and I was an Army brat and had been around this stuff for my whole life. There were three of us there that night and I remember talking to my Brother Rats returning to the barracks and thinking — “Holy shit. I wonder if we could do that shit?”The Marines saved our asses in WWII and Korea and ever since then. God bless the US Marine Corps.JLMwww.themusingsofthebigredca…

  114. LE

    It would be interesting to see what would happen if the founding family lost control.