Caffeine or News?

If you had to choose between your daily cup of coffee or reading a news story from a reputable newspaper on-line, what would you do?

According to News Corp. Chief Rupert Murdoch People reading news for free on the web has got to change.” So, starting in 2011 readers to the New York Times on-line version will be charged for the privilege of reading stories on a regular basis.

This development comes after several years of debates that have seen some newspaper reverse the on-line fees for reading their content but is thought to be a way to combat continual revenue losses across the newspaper world.

However, this development could become just another obstacle to those in the developing world who already have very limited access to on-line media.

In countries such as Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh, only 20 percent of the people have access to the Internet and roughly 70% are not literate.

Such a charge would cost the average European a cup of coffee a month or week for their media fix but would amount to a Pakistani person’s monthly salary.

Read about Britney or eat?

If you were Pakistani, would you rather read about Britney Spear’s antics with her ex-lover or be able to put food on the table for your family?

With no hardcore proof  that charging for news on-line will increase media revenues and if the internet is there to educate people and provide them with access to information then these fees cannot be justified.

Of course we have to acknowledge the benefits for us in the profession of charging for the stories that we right. It protects our jobs, prevents plagiarism and libel, strengthens the loyalty of readers and abuses of freedom of speech.

I want my job and I want to get paid for what I do.

Still want as many people as possible to access my stories, to know what I am writing. Rich or poor, developing or underdeveloped, as a journalist our goal is to disseminate information as much as possible.


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