Newsday Eyes End to Free Web Content

In the late 80s and early 90s, Newsday published a City edition that was intended to challenge the News and Post on the tabloid front. Of the three, Newsday was far and away the best paper. It even gave the Times a run for its money – Newsday certainly had much better Metro coverage, and it even won the Pulitzer two years running for its international coverage (in one of those years the Times didn’t win a Pulitzer at all). The City edition was a money loser, though, so in the mid-90s Newsday retreated back to Long Island (you can still find it on Brooklyn newsstands, but the coverage is almost exclusively Long Island-based).

Now Cablevision, which bought Newsday last year, has announced the paper will “end the distribution of free Web content and make our newsgathering capabilities a service to our customers”. They plan to do this by “transforming Newsday’s Web site into an enhanced, locally focused cable service that we believe will become an important benefit for Newsday and Cablevision customers”. In other words, Newsday will become even more parochial.

Newsday and Cablevision aren’t sharing any details on how they plan to avoid being the next newspaper casualty, but I’m sure the Dolan family knows what they’re doing. They’re astute businessmen – I’m sure they wouldn’t run a good franchise into the ground.

[via Gothamist]