New online era for Kiwi newspapers
Thu, 06 Sep 2012 6:17p.m.
By Tony Field
From Monday, the New Zealand Herald will be transformed from a broadsheet into a smaller, compact format.
Its website is also getting a makeover, and editor-in-chief Tim Murphy is looking at whether people might be prepared to pay to use it.
“It is being considered, actively considered and I think everybody in news knows that you have to consider how you get some value back, and how you present material worth something to readers,” he says.
The Herald will not make people pay a subscription before they can start reading articles online.
However Mr Murphy says it may copy the New York Times with what is known as a "leaky paywall".
“You can read 20, 30, stories or items before it starts to charge at a small micro-payment level, but we haven’t made a decision,” he says.
But sites like the New York Times are the minority. Making people pay is not proving easy.
Peter Thomson, who founded British media agency M2M, is visiting New Zealand and has some suggestions.
“It’s about delivering something extra online, that isn't being delivered in the paper,” he says. “Whether that's deeper analysis, or better photography, or encouraging people to blog, or running games and competitions.”
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