THERE ARE few people whom I have targeted more fiercely and for good reasons than Andrew Sullivan, who is mentioned in my book The Hillary Effect as well. But I’m rooting for his new media subscription venture. It’s where new media has been heading for some time, because there’s no other option other than leaving the medium altogether.
And so, as we contemplated the end of our contract with the Beast at the end of 2012, we faced a decision. As usual, we sought your input and the blogosphere’s – hence the not-terribly subtle thread that explored whether online readers will ever pay for content, and how. The answer is: no one really knows. But as we debated and discussed that unknowable future, we felt more and more that getting readers to pay a small amount for content was the only truly solid future for online journalism. And since the Dish has, from its beginnings, attempted to pioneer exactly such a solid future for web journalism, we also felt we almost had a duty to try and see if we could help break some new ground.
The only completely clear and transparent way to do this, we concluded, was to become totally independent of other media entities and rely entirely on you for our salaries, health insurance, and legal, technological and accounting expenses.
People are going to have to learn to pay for their favorite new media sites or see them die away.