Ownership on the web

ImageNewspapers like The New York Times just don’t respect the internet anymore. It’s that simple. They weren’t born here and they treat the web kike a rental. They might even have it in their heads that this WWW thing is just another fad. Id like to remind these hard copy dinosaurs that other titans have previously denigrated the new god and pretty soon there after filed for bankruptcy.

The particular issue that I’m decrying here is a new policy by The New York Times’ online edition to reduce the maximum number of articles one can view gratis on their site from 20 per month to 10. As a site that had previously lost its lead as the most viewed online news vendor to The Huffington post, this was the wrong move.

For your love of money NYT, you have opened the doors to all the evils resulting from antagonizing Netizens. We have the privilege of being a mere Google search away from viewing similar if not better content from one of your many competitors. The prospect of having to put on a coat and go to the newsstand to pick up a newspaper is no more. Your insult to us is just as swiftly rebuffed. The only difference is that unlike you, we have mobility. We demand our right as Netizens. Our right to content!

How can they justify making it harder for those who still consume their content, at a time when the tide against them is rising. It’s simply alienating to what remaining loyalists they have. It’s these types of “real world” power trips that have probably caused some of the paper’s current ebbing support. The web is too fluid a medium for anyone to think that they can build a wall that will isolate content successfully.

The New York Times’ declining sales have been attributed to the rise of alternative media including competition from social media. This is kind of obvious since The New York Times has the exact opposite strategy regarding content as does social media. The paper seeks to restrict and maintain a hold on content, how its consumed and by whom. Social media, specifically sites like Facebook have very open policies regarding content. The worst it can get on one of these sites is that its specific users can restrict access to their own contributions. Maybe this stark difference in how these organizations, organize content is the reason why The New York Times is in decline and social media is on the rise.

Social media grew up with the web. It doesn’t exist without it. That is why sites like Facebook and twitter teat their users like MVPs and not like annoying hobos who want free content. The problem with The New York Times is that it acts as if there is any future scenario where it exists without the web. It’s looking longingly at a time when squares were named after it and balls dropped in its honor. Reality check NYT, it’s not 1851 anymore. You’re no longer the toast of the world.

Hundreds of millions of people log on to Facebook daily. You’re just lucky if you can get a measly 30 million. The web is like a brand new country club. You see in the old world you may have been considered as something. But here, online, there are millionaires, and there are centimillionaires!

My advice to “the Old Gray Lady” , adapt or die.

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