Monday, August 18, 2008

The Listener grows a brain?

The Listener has never really got the web. Since the beginning of its online presence, it has locked most of its content away behind a "delaywall" in an effort to drive hardcopy sales. A couple of weeks ago, it extended that policy to be all-encompassing, sealing away even previously free offerings such as Brian Easton's "Economy" and David Young's "Business" columns (which in the wake of Russell Brown's departure, were about the only reason I was visiting the site). There being no point in visiting a site where I couldn't read anything, I simply gave up and delinked it.

Possibly a lot of other people followed suit, because this week, there's been a change in policy. Not only have the previous changes been reversed, but now almost all content is free, with only the main feature, food, and some art/books/music material delayed. I'm not sure if this is an experiment, but hopefully the change will be permanent. In the meantime, you might want to read Jane Clifton's musings on bloggers vs journalists for free while you still can.

Update (20/08/2008): That didn't last long - the delaywall is back. I wonder what effect it had on their traffic?