Report: ProJo Parent to Consider Charging for On-Line Content

ProJo executive editor Tom Heslin, in a question-and-answer session after a speech before good-government group Common Cause Rhode Island a few weeks ago, suggested that the paper would consider charging for content. Everyone in the industry, he noted, is weighing the move amid major declines in revenue.

Now, a report from Bloomberg News that ProJo parent company A.H. Belo will start charging for access to either the ProJo, the Dallas Morning News, or a paper it owns in Riverside, California within the next six months.

Belo is considering models for charging for some of its Web content and plans to implement a pay wall within six months at either the Morning News, Rhode Island’s Providence Journal or Riverside Press-Enterprise, published in California, Moroney said. That may require Web readers to go directly to the newspaper’s site to read stories, he said.

‘Not Monetized’

“This is traffic that’s not being monetized to any great degree,” Moroney said. “It’s akin to a person who drops into town, buys one copy of your newspaper and leaves town again and yet you spend a whole bunch of time building your business around that type of customer.”

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