I wouldn’t want to be a publisher in the current market, and understand their need to generate revenue from as many sources as possible (let’s hope publishers and advertising sales people aren’t reading this, because I tell them something different!). I was, however, disappointed to see that Dedicated Systems is now asking for paid subscriptions to be able to post releases. The costs are not insignificant – €595 to €5000 per year, considerably more that would be required to stop the spam problem highlighted as one of the reasons for switching to a paid model.
Personally I don’t believe websites that charge for publication in our industry are going to succeed. There are a huge number of sites, and whilst I’m sure there will be customers for the service, the new content will decrease and ultimately this is going to make the site less attractive as a marketing vehicle. There are technical solutions to spam, and a price structure that is a fraction of the one proposed would have the same spam-killing effect.
I hope Dedicated Systems reviews its policy and returns to a strategy of providing comprehensive news. I also hope other sites won’t follow its lead, but I guess it is inevitable that some will decide on a move that provides undoubted benefits in the short term, despite the fact that it may significantly harm the site in the long term.