ADG Goes Behind the Wall (Updated!)

The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette announced yesterday that they’re battening down the hatches. They’ll be ending free access to their online content  starting August 5 — all news content (much of which has been available at no charge through the newspaper’s Northwest Arkansas site) will officially be on lockdown.

The inimitable Lance Turner offers his analysis of this strategic move here. Choice cut:

And what does it mean for the Web site? Well, you can kiss some of those inbound links goodbye. Bloggers and other Web sites will be loathe to send their readers to locked-down content, which in turn means more online irrelevance for DG news stories and opinion columns. (emphasis added)

In a related story, the ADG will be requiring all of their readers to sign a non-disclosure agreement under which they’ll not be permitted to discuss the paper’s content with non-subscribers.

UPDATE: The Fayetteville Flyer picks up on publisher Walter Hussman’s statement that “online advertising is not as effective.” FF’s Todd Gill asks: “Did you really just tell your current and potential advertisers that there’s no value in placing ads on your website?”

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6 thoughts on “ADG Goes Behind the Wall (Updated!)

  • July 13, 2009 at 10:25 am

    Soooo…if I understand this correctly, they want to REDUCE traffic to their website.

  • July 13, 2009 at 11:08 am


    Looks like Stephens has a chance to really clean up here.

    I think the real question for people is whether WEHCO will go “Whole Hog,” so to speak, and make subscription as well.

    I don’t know that people will cotton to having their access to Razorback news and Wally Hall removed.

    Okay, maybe the latter.

  • July 13, 2009 at 2:57 pm

    I will pay extra for Wally Hall Free publications. In fact I do with Hawgs Illustrated.

  • July 14, 2009 at 9:09 am

    Dumb, dumb, dumb. But don’t worry, when the DG goes under, Obama will buy them out.

  • Pingback: Blake’s Think Tank » Blog Archive » Hussman on Web advertising: It’s not “as effective” as print advertising

  • July 23, 2009 at 11:17 pm

    I understand that the ADG has also disconnected its server network in order to ensure that the editorial staff cannot send “instantaneous” messages (whether news copy or dirty jokes) to one another over newfangled computers. Unless, that is, the reporters are willing to pay for the privilege.


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