December 1st, 2009

(no subject)

Reading this article and the follow-up, it seems that "paywall" is the new word for toll booth.

It's as if people who ran stagecoach services got all flustered by these "cars" and "highways" and insisted on toll booths everywhere or "it'll never work", despite having worked quite well for a decade or more already. (Actually, stagecoaches were put out of business by the telegraph, but that's another story.)

I don't understand the "My business model is failing, therefore you must change _yours_" argument. The really strange part is watching sites being destroyed by Google's de-listing of them, while the septegenarian leader of Fox requests the same de-listing. He wants the entire internet to get off his lawn.

The _hilarious_ part is that Murdoch has recently be talking about partnering with Microsoft and walling out Google. Remember back in 1995 when Microsoft said that MSN would "destroy the internet", and then they tried to "embrace and extend" the web with "this site best viewed in Internet Explorer"? Apparently, Murdock has now caught up with the mid-90's: "You think you can own the internet? I want in." Bit slow on the uptake, this geezer...

Some of the best thinking I've seen on this topic is Clay Shirky's blog, starting with the one about micropayments and continuing through the one about itunes, the excellent thinking the unthinkable, the graduation speech, and rescuing the reporters.