Does Isaacson really expect us to believe that newspapers generated all of their revenues from print subscribers… he is suggesting that making content available online without a subscription is the equivalent of giving it away for free, advertising be damned.
The problem is that fewer of these consumers are paying. Instead, news organizations are merrily giving away their news. According to a Pew Research Center study, a tipping point occurred last year: more people in the U.S. got their news online for free than paid for it by buying newspapers and magazines. Who can blame them? Even an old print junkie like me has quit subscribing to the New York Times, because if it doesn’t see fit to charge for its content, I’d feel like a fool paying for it.