Online Aussies: ‘We won’t pay for news’

A large majority of Australians say they would not pay for online news, a survey suggests.

According to a poll of more than 18,000 Australians released today by Pure Profile, only 5% said they would be willing to pay for “high quality articles”. A further 7% said they would be willing to pay if there was no advertising. 10% said they would not pay because the quality of online news was unimportant to them, while the vast majority – 78% – said they would simply refuse to pay for online news.  

The figures echo similar ones in a Harris poll carried out in the UK released earlier this week which also suggested than only about 5% of online users would be willing to pay for news content.

The findings are potentially significant because major online media owners, including Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp have signalled their intentions to attempt to start charging for content.

However, Ed Smith, chief commercial officer of News Digital Media in Australia, has argued that surveys of this kind depend on how questions are asked. Smith tells today’s SMH:

“If you ask them yes or no, everyone says no. But if you do more in-depth research about what they consume, where and why and how they would be prepared to pay for it, you see very different results in line with our strategy.”


Get the latest media and marketing industry news (and views) direct to your inbox.

Sign up to the free Mumbrella newsletter now.



Sign up to our free daily update to get the latest in media and marketing.