No wonder the Globe and Mail has such a disdainful fascination with young people!* After instituting a paywall on their website last year that allows readers to access only 10 free articles per month before having to sign up, publisher and chief executive Philip Crawley spoke to Journalism.co.uk about what the paper has learned about its readership and how that has affected the paper’s behaviour.
Snugly nestled in the middle of the post is the following gem:
“We are really only interested in readers who earn more than $100,000.”
Hmm… that sure seems like an odd thing for the head of Canada’s self-styled “national newspaper” to say, one that presumably subscribes to the notion that journalists should serve some kind of public good. Someone should remind Crawley that those sentiments are best kept in private circles and not on the internet where poor people can read them. (If they can even read! You know poor people, often lacking in education that rich people manage to get in spades!)
Now, it should be mentioned that Crawley was talking about what the Globe has learned about its readership, who its most loyal readers are and so on. He makes the
obvious correct point that such information is valuable to advertisers, and advertisers want to target people who have money. On the other hand, advertisers don’t really care about those awful poors who keep trying to read your esteemed paper but make way less than a hundred grand a year.
For what it’s worth, the paper’s media reporter Steve Ladurantaye said the $100,000 figure only referred to household income, but that was not at all clear from Crawley’s comment.
For the record, the $100,000 everyone is talking about refers to household income. Not someone's individual salary.
— Steve Ladurantaye (@sladurantaye) October 8, 2013
Crawley also says he has launched a six-person crew within the 300-strong newsroom whose goal it is to drive more subscriptions, and that these people are rewarded in some fashion when they meet their goals.
[The] Globe and Mail is incentivising newsroom staff to create compelling content that results in people signing up and paying for a monthly subscription to the paywalled site.
So six people at the Globe and Mail are dedicated to creating “compelling content” for a newspaper that admits it only cares about Canada’s wealthiest citizens. One can only guess how those incentives skew the newspaper’s coverage.
*But really, fuck young people, right? They’re poor and creative! The worst!
[Journalism.co.uk] [image via NS Newsflash/Flickr]