Tuesday, April 29, 2008

How to save the New York Times - TimesCash voting

Murdoch, as expected, is remaking the Wall Street Journal in his own image. The old leadership has been evicted.

The New York Times is doing very badly in the market. The share price predicts a quick decline, the only thing saving the paper is a two tiered stock structure that splits control from equity. The NYT is next for the chopper.

Can it be saved?

If I had control, I'd introduce "TimesCash".

Here's how it would work.

Anyone can buy any amount of TimesCash at any time using their credit card, starting with a minimum block of $10. It's sold through Google Checkout, Amazon, or the NYT could process its own transactions.

Readers spend any amount of TimesCash they have on any story they like, but clicking on a button next to the story. Each day, the NYT would rank stories by TimesCash earnings, just as they do for "most emailed", "most blogged" and "most searched". Readers could decide if they want their names to be displayed alongside the stories they've voted for.

When a reader's TimesCash account is depleted, they can buy more whenever they want.

Once a year the names of the biggest TimesCash purchasers would be published -- for those who chose the publicity.

This would save the New York Times. I'll take $10 of TimesCash as my reward.

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