Getting the micropayments for the journal articles: Won’t Subscribe

Tim Bray had an interesting proposition, and for the context has this subscription cost just for the newspapers.

Does this look usurious? Yes, it is! How much value do you think we can derive from these subscriptions?

The next step in their thinking involves an estimate of how much they could get for an individual article view. It’s hard to imagine anyone being willing to pay more than a buck. Minimum price… Who knows? Our current bank infrastructure isn’t good at micropayments, which makes it harder. Of course, you could imagine some sort of intermediary service which pools per-article payments to many publications and could probably do micropayments, but nobody’s gotten traction with one of those yet. Furthermore, this intermediary starts to smell like Doordash, a service that controls access to your clients and charges you an onerous revenue slice. Every restaurant hates them.

ongoing by Tim Bray · Won’t Subscribe

Consider the cost of publishing versus the actual cost. Why not shift to micropayments for the journal articles instead of all you can eat for $35 on an average? Does it really cost letters to the editor that much to post online?

Barring the cost of processing, the ongoing costs are a terrible price to pay and I wonder why there is no outrage on the high journal subscription costs. Why not explore alternative models for the journal articles?

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