When Rupert Murdoch’s TimesOnline and then The Sun/News of the World blocked the site recently it was seen as the start of Murdoch’s much-discussed policy to block out search engines and build paywalls around his sites. Now it’s starting to look more like a vendetta against NewsNow.
As PaidContent reports today, NewsNow is the only aggregator blocked by Mirror.co.uk, with the Mirror’s Digital Director Matt Kelly telling PaidContent “We’re not big fans of their business model”.
For those unfamiliar with it, NewsNow displays links to current news stories from around the web. Aside from the link it provides absolutely no other content lifted from other sites. Users must click through to the original article to read it. Advertising surrounds the links and it all seems rather inoffensive, with users encouraged to visit original sites, driving traffic back to the source of the news.
Paid Content speculates that the move is down to Trinity Mirror trying to increase the number of ‘high value’ regular readers of the site, seeing people who click through to read one article as worthless to advertisers. If this is the case, we can’t help but think that they’re on a hiding to nothing.
Modern online news consumers are spoilt for choice and the best way to keep them coming back is to provide quality content. How do they find that content? By browsing for news on aggregation sites and search engines. It will be interesting to see how this one plays out…