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Sat May 25, 2019, 05:20 PM

Arkansas newspaper gambles on free iPads as the future

Source: Associated Press

Arkansas newspaper gambles on free iPads as the future
Hannah Grabenstein, Associated Press Updated 12:32 pm CDT, Saturday, May 25, 2019

HOPE, Ark. (AP) Over a lunch of hamburger steaks, mashed potatoes and green beans, Walter Hussman delivered his pitch to the dozen or so attendees of the Hope, Arkansas, Rotary Club meeting. He promised that if they keep paying their current rate of $36 a month for subscription to the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette newspaper, even though it will no longer be printed daily or delivered to their door, they'll get a free iPad to view a digital version.

The daily digital replica of the state's largest newspaper will be accessed with an easy-to-use app they can download on the tablet that the newspaper is distributing to subscribers.

Hussman, the newspaper's publisher, said Wednesday that by the end of the year, only the Sunday edition of the paper will be printed.

It's a gamble Hussman feels compelled to take to sustain his newsroom of 106 employees and turn a profit, which the paper hasn't done since 2017.

Read more: https://www.chron.com/news/us/article/Arkansas-newspaper-gambles-on-free-iPads-as-the-13896335.php

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Arrow 10 replies Author Time Post
Reply Arkansas newspaper gambles on free iPads as the future (Original post)
Judi Lynn May 2019 OP
Dennis Donovan May 2019 #1
Archae May 2019 #6
LogicFirst May 2019 #9
Hoyt May 2019 #2
TomSlick May 2019 #3
SWBTATTReg May 2019 #4
sinkingfeeling May 2019 #5
TomSlick May 2019 #7
KY_EnviroGuy May 2019 #8
Hestia May 2019 #10

Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Sat May 25, 2019, 05:38 PM

1. iPads? Overpriced.

I bought the first iPods back in the early aughts (1st gen and 2nd gen). The iPad is a dinosaur.

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Response to Dennis Donovan (Reply #1)

Sat May 25, 2019, 06:59 PM

6. I have an older iPad myself...

I use it to read the Sheboygan Press, and play "Angry Birds 2."

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Response to Dennis Donovan (Reply #1)

Sun May 26, 2019, 12:29 AM

9. I love my Ipad.

I bought my Ipad in 2013 and it is still alive and well. It is definitely not a dinosaur.

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Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Sat May 25, 2019, 05:38 PM

2. After almost 60 years of reading at least one newspaper a day, I've pretty much gone digital.

I like digital for a number of reasons.

I do miss having old newspapers available for messy projects and meals.

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Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Sat May 25, 2019, 05:52 PM

3. I'm an Arkansas Democrat-Gazette subscriber.

I was skeptical about replacing paper but quickly became a fan.

The Dem-Gaz editorial position is still way-on too conservative but I sincerely hope going electronic saves our only state-wide paper.

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Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Sat May 25, 2019, 05:57 PM

4. Maybe this time around it'll work. Back in the early 1980s, Knight Rider Newspapers in Miami...

FL tried this but you had to buy an terminal / access device of some sort, cost $600 back then. My, how the times changed. $36 for monthly service isn't really a bad price.

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Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Sat May 25, 2019, 06:33 PM

5. Won't work for me since I take a black marker to the Arkansas Democrat-Gazette. I black out

every photo of the Empty Chair. The IPad will be ruined on the first day.

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Response to sinkingfeeling (Reply #5)

Sat May 25, 2019, 07:00 PM

7. I think you'll be OK.

The NW Arkansas Dem-Gaz is supposed to remain print.

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Response to Judi Lynn (Original post)

Sat May 25, 2019, 08:36 PM

8. Gentrification of newspapers.

Let's remember this requires subscribers to pay for internet with WIFI setup as well (perhaps $50/mo.?). And who will pay for broken or dead battery iPads as they go bad?

Maybe I'm old-fashioned (I am) but this does not sound like a grass roots solution to delivering the news to the masses to me....

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Response to KY_EnviroGuy (Reply #8)

Sun May 26, 2019, 10:43 AM

10. I've only had the digital format for the last 5 years - I used to love it

but they changed the website and is now not easy to navigate at all. I used to be an employee and have had a wonderful pricing for my subscription. If it goes up I will cancel, it's only worth what I am paying now. Same with Directv - if it wasn't so dadgum cheap, I would have cancelled a long time ago. It is essentially free.

Part of the deal with internet connections, Hussman also owns cable tv & cable internet. Those are his money-makers. If you live in the sticks, they are your only choice. They were our only choice for awhile and I think too expensive for the pittance that you get. Also, the provider had DDL attacks and were hacked, but did not tell anyone until later.
.
How many times has your battery died on your iPad? The batteries last forever but I don't use it for a browser, just to read books. Love an iPad for that.

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