This Day On The Street
Continue to site right-arrow
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here
Stocks Under $10 with 50-100% upside potential - 14 days FREE!

The Newspaper Paywall Delusion

Stocks in this article: NYT WPO NWS

Now, there is a place for a "paid tier." There has always been a way to get paid directly for reporting, sometimes very small bits of reporting, stories you don't want everyone to know about, scoops given only to the select.

It's called a newsletter.

My first Atlanta editor retired to run a newsletter. He took public company reports, interviewed select CEOs, glued the results to pasteboard and sold subscriptions for about $395/year. Only financial analysts and investment pros would pay that price, which made his work "insider" insight worth paying for.

Lots of business-to-business magazines also restrict circulation. Qualified readers, who fill out cards to prove they're players in the industry, get free subscriptions. Others might pay, or they might even be refused, because the magazine wants to tell advertisers their ads reach the whole industry, with no wasted circulation.

The Internet values depth, not breadth. There are an infinite number of paid opportunities in the field you're reading about now, because everyone is looking for an edge, an insider's insight. Many will pay for that insight just to make sure competitors don't get it.

But that's not true in general news. You turn on the TV and there it is. If a story isn't known widely, it's not even news. If a newspaper puts up a paywall, it's no longer a newspaper. It's a newsletter.

If the New York Times and The Wall Street Journal want to become newsletters, that's fine by me. But they're leaving a huge market vacuum and that vacuum will be filled.

As Eliza Doolittle said in "My Fair Lady," "We can do very well without you."

At the time of publication the author had no position in any of the stocks mentioned.

This article was written by an independent contributor, separate from TheStreet's regular news coverage.

2 of 2

Select the service that is right for you!

Action Alerts PLUS
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
  • Weekly roundups
TheStreet Quant Ratings
Try it NOW
Only $49.95/yr

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
  • Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Stocks Under $10
Try it NOW

David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
  • Weekly roundups
Dividend Stock Advisor
Try it NOW

Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
  • Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Real Money Pro
Try it NOW

All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.

Product Features:
  • Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
  • Intraday commentary & news
  • Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Options Profits
Try it NOW

Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • 100+ monthly options trading ideas
  • Actionable options commentary & news
  • Real-time trading community
  • Options TV
To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.
Submit an article to us!


DOW 17,804.80 +26.65 0.15%
S&P 500 2,070.65 +9.42 0.46%
NASDAQ 4,765.38 +16.9840 0.36%

Brokerage Partners

Rates from

  • Mortgage
  • Credit Cards
  • Auto

Free Newsletters from TheStreet

My Subscriptions:

After the Bell

Before the Bell

Booyah! Newsletter

Midday Bell

TheStreet Top 10 Stories

Winners & Losers

Register for Newsletters
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs