At Monday night’s Beyond the Paywall event at City University we found out how we are going to fund quality journalism in a digital world…So that’s sorted then.
Well not quite, but there was plenty of intelligent discussion around what remains the existential question facing journalism and journalists from Standard editor Geordie Greig, Guardian media editor Dan Sabbagh, Future Publishing boss Stevie Spring, Dominic Young and News International marketing chief Katie Vanneck-Smith.
The conclusion was probably that there is no one-size-fits-all approach in today’s sometimes bewilderingly complex new media world.
Future has had success with an array of apps – including a stunningly successful one called “lick of the day” (for guitarists). The Times paints a convincing picture about the commercial positives being drawn from its paywall – basically it makes more money from 79,000 online subscribers than it did from 20 million online browsers a month.
Dan Sabbagh made a convincing case for the power of quality journalism to enhance a brand which can be exploited in other ways. And is worth noting that that the £40m a year that The Guardian makes from online is about four times what Mail Online currently makes from its all-conquering website.
Geordie Greig gave us some insight into the resurgence of the Evening Standard – one of the greatest comebacks in British journalistic history. And Dominic Young gave a good big-picture defence of the paywall strategy.
Anyway, have a look for yourself (the first few minutes are taken up with introductions).
This event was filmed by the BBC College of Journalism.