Dow Jones CEO: ‘Free costs too much’ by Shakia Harris



The first session of the World Newspaper Congress kicked off with talk of perhaps the biggest ongoing conversation amongst the media around the world: how to pay for the digital content the news industry creates.

Les Hinton, CEO of Dow Jones & Co., told the Congress that charging for online news is a must, and companies need to find more ways to improve their ad sales to survive. Paul Jansen, CEO of SPH search at Singapore Press Holdings, said his biggest mistake was initially going free in the infancy of the Web. Andreas Wiele, of Axel Springer AG in Germany, said the industry must come up with models to allow print to measure efficiency, or advertisers will “go away.”

Righting past mistakes

The media industry must completely reinvent itself to increase productivity, quality and profits, Hinton said. Charging for online news is a must and companies need to find more ways to improve their advertisement sales to survive.

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