Why Jeffrey P. Bezos Bought The Washington Post


The Washington Post has the article Bezos could use Amazon model of customer targeting to reboot the newspaper industry.

The article starts with the following:

Amazon.com founder Jeffrey P. Bezos’s purchase of The Washington Post promises not just an ownership change for the 135-year-old institution, but a potential transformation of the fusty mechanics of the newspaper business.

It remains to be seen whether the experiences of an Internet behemoth can be successfully applied to a legacy newspaper — and whether Amazon-style customer targeting would be palatable at a news organization.

I was thinking that the author of this article, coming from a traditional newspaper background, was missing the point a little bit.

My whole purpose for reading this article was the thought that Bezos would put into action the idea I posted in my 2010 post, Monetizing Internet Content. Toward then end of The Washington Post article came these paragraphs:

One move that Bezos might take at the outset is to end the paper’s new online subscription program, which limits how many stories readers can access without paying for a subscription, according to Stone, a journalist who has covered Amazon for more than 14 years.

“What is less customer-focused than a pay wall?” he asked. “You’re making it harder for people to read your story at the same time that there’s an abundance of competition.”

Now, I think they are on to something.  Of course, these paragraphs still haven’t contemplated the use of my idea exactly, but they do comprehend what is the problem with paywalls.  I expected Google would be the one to implement my ideas, but I see that Amazon is another company that has all the necessary technology.

It will be exciting to see whether or not The Washington Post company or Amazon will become a major seller of micropayment subscription plans that give the reader access to a wide assortment of articles from many newspapers and magazines.

Leave a comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.