Amos Schocken: Newspapers to charge for websites

Haaretz publisher Amos Schocken told Israel Radio Sunday that Israel's newspapers will have to charge payment for use of their websites.
"The New York Times has gained 400,000 digital subscribers after it started charging for its digital edition," Schocken explained. "Israel's newspapers will have to do this, especially in view of what's been happening in the country in the past few months."
Schocken said that Israel's newspapers are in a fight for survival, and that they will have to fire employees. The Haaretz workers committee has declared a labor dispute over cutbacks and layoffs at the paper.
"We moved toward the employees on practical matters," said Schocken. "I have a feeling that the workers have some understanding about the condition of the newspapers, alongside a naïve hope that it can be solved with Haaretz firing employees. We must cut our expenses to meet revenue. We've halved the sports pages."
Asked whether print newspapers have reached the end of their run, Schocken said, "That's a big question. Internet developments affect us. It's happening worldwide and in Israel. Something else also happened in Israel - the advertising market shrank in 2011."
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