Writing and Publishing

The Price of Information

If I subscribed to every email newsletter and information service that was offered me, there would not be enough time to read them all.

So when a newsletter offer appears in my in box, which frequently happens, I give it only the briefest of consideration before pressing delete. Last week, however, I paused long enough to give one such solicitation serious consideration.

As a magazine publisher, a newsletter about publishing seemed worthy. I looked at the sample issue. It was a PDF file of eight pages in length. Eight pages is a bit too much to read online, yet I dislike printing a document merely for the sake of portability and convenience.

I scanned the contents. One article was of great interest and a second of passing appeal. Perhaps, I considered, this newsletter might be worthy of my time. I clicked on the “subscribe” link and was shocked with what I saw. It was not a free publication, but one with a cost—945 dollars. Not 9 dollars and 45 cents, but nine hundred and forty-five dollars! When I assumed it was free, I was mildly engaged, but at 945 dollars I was appallingly disinterested.

How can someone have try to charge for news that is free and readily available? What impudence.

Yes, information does have its price, but unless it’s unique or protected, the appropriate price in today’s information laden society approaches zero.





By Peter Lyle DeHaan

Author Peter Lyle DeHaan, PhD, publishes books about business, customer service, the call center industry, and business and writing.

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