This morning, their old "news" link led to a statement that one can now read the ENTIRE newspaper on-line. If one subscribes. And that some local news will still be included in their Newszap forums.
I didn't see any news in the forums, so I sent an e-mail to the auto-contact link they have. Here's what I got back (in part):
Thanks for your email. To be honest with you, we reached the conclusion that we could no longer give away our newspaper content for free. We are proud of the work our staff members are doing and believe we’re making a difference for thousands of people every day.I think it's a form e-mail. I sent my question in to two separate contact links and got the same e-mail back each time. I followed the link they sent and, after a bit of searching, and working my way through a name and address data collection page (Harrington J. Millworthy, IV, at your service), but eventually I found the Subscription Rates page (above left).
We hope you will consider purchasing an e-Subscription, which will give you every page of every edition of the newspaper in an easy-to-read format and with full search capabilities. To make this option more attractive, we have an introductory offer of 2 years for the price of 1, which we think is a great deal!
I guess that 2-fer offer means I could get two years of the e-paper for $145. That's very generous, but still probably not of interest to me.
As part of my job, I scan a variety of news sources for items related to land-use planning and to geospatial data uses. Until now, the State News has been one of those sources. But given the low volume of news I usually found, I don't know that it is worth it to subscribe to an online version of the printed paper. Someone who gets that paper the old fashioned way is likely to let us know if there is ever anything worth looking at.
I don't think this change will do the State news much good. The News Journal offers a relatively complete edition on-line each day. I think they have too many ads, but understand they have to pay the bills. The Cape Gazette also offers a paid "full content" version but does post the main news of each week for free.
The New York Times tried a pay-only premium portion of their site for a while, but scrapped that plan this fall (remember Times Select?). In part, I think, they ended Times Select because people simply ignored the content that they would have had to pay to see. As a result, no one referred to it. No one linked to it. It ceased to be a main part of the discussion.
So, for now at least, I say so-long to on-line content from the Delaware State News.