Times-Standard provides one more reason to stop reading it

As part of its strategic plan to reduce costs by downsizing itself into oblivion, the Times-Standard announced a new price structure that requires separate payments for print and online subscriptions.

The announcement was accompanied by a polished ad campaign that showed a photo of a bustling newsroom, beneath which read, “More money, more suck. Promise.”

The new pricing scheme appears to have confused some readers, who wonder why, if they already have a print subscription, they will be billed again to read the same news online. As commenter A Guy said on the North Coast Journal blog,

They’ve already collected the news, written it up, and not had it copy edited or spell checked, so where’s the additional cost?

Netflix outraged thousands of people several weeks ago when it announced separate subscription rates for DVD and digital delivery. Times-Standard Publisher Dave Kuta noted that the two price models are similar, “except Netflix isn’t crap.”

Kuta added, “Increasingly businesses are recognizing that digital content can demand a premium. They’re learning that there’s stuff on the Internet worth paying for. Not our stuff, obviously, but someone’s.”

25 Responses

  1. I can’t remember when the last time I thought the T/S was worth paying for. And I’ve been around decades!

    Maybe they will fold? Maybe Mr. Arkley will buy it and may a decent publication out of it.

  2. I may not have had enough coffee this morning Bugs, but did Kuta really say that?

    Wait a minute…gulp gulp gulp…okay…you’re just being funny.

  3. Love it. The TS paywall will be the bridge too far for me. I won’t do it. A lot of people won’t, and then Channel 3 will become a more important player for daily news, not that the content is any better over there, but we’ve gotten to the point that it also doesn’t seem to be any worse.

  4. Atleast with the T-S, we are spared of Andrea Arnot’s weekly column

  5. Atleast we are spared from Andrea Arnot’s weekly column

  6. …then Channel 3 will become a more important player for daily news, not that the content is any better over there,...

    I suppose it shouldn’t have come as a surprise, but last time I watched the Channel 3 news there seemed to be only one local news story featured. The rest was state and national stuff I could have watched elsewhere. I can’t help but think they’re having the same problems print news is having.

    As far as paying more for online news, I’d say that’s fine for non- subscribers, but I had to wonder just how much it’s worth for most of us to pay for many of the papers that have started charging for online viewing?

    I notice the Ukiah Daily Journal (same company as the Times- Standard) has already started charging. I do visit the UDJ often, but rarely read anything as there’s rarely anything there to read, much less link to. Do I want to pay a monthly fee for something I might link to less than 5 times a year?

    Same with the Wall Street Journal. Went there wanting to read a news item I found a link to on Rough and Tumble. You could only read the first paragraph before being asked to subscribe. Again: Do I want to pay a subscription fee for something I might read five articles a year from?

    Never mind linking to them only works if my own readers have a subscription.

    What’s really going to suck is if (or when?) the Sacramento Bee starts charging, but at least I do read and link to that one a lot.

  7. Read the McKinleyville Press. Great paper.

  8. Fred, hopefully if the Bee starts charging you’ll continue to make the user name and password available to your readers. That’s an awfully nice service you provide.

    I agree with Robert, too. The McKinleyville Press is a good read.

  9. I think the belief that Andrea Arnot’s column sucked shlong transcends all known partisan boundaries.

  10. I know of one person who used to schedule her parties around Arnot’s schedule. It was THAT important to have her party documented. It also more or less guaranteed Arkley’s attendance.

  11. At least Driscoll doesn’t write for the T-S anymore.

  12. Driscoll is a tool.

  13. Donna Tam is hot.

  14. This apparently stems from the theory that the desirability of a commodity increases with its price. For instance, if toilet paper is free, people use more of it than if they pay for it. Which, actually, ties in nicely with the T-S angle.

  15. Whoops: edit–
    This apparently stems from the theory that the perceived worth of a commodity increases with its price. For instance, if toilet paper is free, people use more of it than if they pay for it. Which, actually, ties in nicely with the T-S angle.

  16. Holy shit, Abate is on the loose and the Sub Standard has hired him to develop some hybred print online combo package like the big dream at the Journal. The whole charging for both does give the NCJ a slight advantage, but only if they get front page news that’s more current than “The Customer isn’t Always Right” story that the Mirror posted for free two years ago.

  17. The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, New York Times, and even the SF Chronicle have on-line FOR FREE, but the liberal rag that masquarades as a newspaper in this northern region of the ‘left coast’ has the hubris to charge?

    Just when you think that the record for standing, running, and leaping nerve has been set, the fourth estate pulls one out!

  18. I, for one, am happy the TS has limited it’s access. I agree, one more reason not to read the “local” paper. I just wish they had waited a week so I could still read the handicapping articles and race results from the fair. I’m sure it will improve my karma as the only section that I read regularly was the obituaries “hoping to see my ex-girlfriend’s name”.

  19. Mr Bill you bad. Bad.

    I just scan the TS headlines and laugh at the stupidity. What’s the lead off today 8/19? Well today its POT!

    I consider that rag to be european toilet paper.

  20. I for one am glad that T-S will lose readers. Now I can watch more hot Kelly on 3 and more Fox Nation. I have given up on local news long time ago. The only thing worth watching is Hannity and dateline NBC.

  21. So. The substandard seals the death grip on its insignificance. Duh. Kim, dave, thad, enjoy the stimulated economy. Enjoy your unemployment checks. Have a great time.

    Oh, but pot and progs rein supreme? Take that to Your mortgage holder. Ttfn!

  22. channel 3 “news” is an endless parade of pets up for adoption , human interest stories and public service announcements and very little news … totally unwatchable .

  23. Any thing is better than the Rag Standard!

  24. Donna Tam is hot. No, damn HOT! If she were featured as a regular center fold in the TS I’d buy the rag. Even if they tried screwing it up with articles.

  25. Donna is hot? Wtfc? I’d rather the drivel she tries to pass off as an article be informed and have correct spelling.

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