Give Away Paragraphs For Free, But Sell A Word

obama_hopeusaWe are scanners of the news, not readers. Or so thinks Media Shift‘s Michael Josefowicz. This is why things like e-subscription and micro-payments for individual news items won’t work; it’s asking people to pay for paragraphs that they would rather glance over vaguely than actually read. Know what we will read? T-shirts.

Simple, portable t-shirt slogans like “HOPE” and “CHANGE” have sold by the thousands (at least) over the last year or so, and it’s because they allowed people to feel connected to current events without really knowing much about the situation. Obama T-shirts often say I’m at least somewhat educated and forward thinking, just not educated enough to know the policy platforms behind the “CHANGE” slogan stretched across my chest.

No matter though, this desire for connection to the news with minimal committments could prove a lovely (if shady) little money maker for papers. Next time that big story rolls around, New York Times, latch onto it with a vengeance, sell people the one word summation of the idea without charging them for the pages of information they’d need to actually understand what their t shirts means.

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