Sunday, May 24, 2009

"Wired" and the "free content" problem


James Ledbetter has an interesting perspective on “free content” in the Washington Post Business Section today (Sunday, May 24). The article is “Call It Free, But it Will Cost You”, here.

He discusses Chris Anderson, editor of Wired (often quoted on these blogs) and author of “The Long Tail”, which maintains that giving things away free is the “radical” business model for the future. He goes on to explain how Conde Nast manages the ad space in his magazine so as to attract the select group of readers, and discourage the “shoplifters”. He also talks about the free stores of the 60s,. Diggers and Yippies, which are long gone.

Giving content away free for a long time could pay off if the content attracts investors for a bigger project, say a movie.

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