New York Times publisher Arthur Sulzberger Jr. talks paywalls and strategy at the Digital Life Design conference in Munich.
For the upcoming metered news, Sulzberger said that users will be able to search into the paid section of the New York Times, at least for a limited number of stories per month. Upon exceeding that as yet-unspecified-number, users will have to pay. The New York Times will allow those searches (to some degree) so that it does not “disconnect from the internet,” Sulzberger said. I suppose we’ll find out, after the pay wall goes up, if people will continue to tweet New York Times stories every 4 seconds.
With the big day drawing nearer, it still seems that The New York Times Company has no idea how to articulate their plans to charge for their content. Maybe it’s just Sulzberger who can’t meaningfully convey the various discussions in progress.
Despite all the hype about a metered approach, it’s not too late for The New York Times to backtrack. Their rollout date is a moving target, set for some time this quarter. When it was announced that they were going to start charging, the company said it would happen in early 2011.