I love reading the newspaper. The Sunday paper is my favorite. I love waking up late on a Sunday morning, and reading the paper (comics first!) while eating a late breakfast. What I don’t like is the guilt I feel from killing trees to enjoy this little indulgence. Everything in the newspapers is readily available in digital format somewhere, so why can’t I get a digital newspaper? I would actually *pay* for a digital version of the New York Times. They could send me an email every morning with a PDF attachment. That PDF file contains the entire newspaper content (with or without ads – I’d pay more to get it without ads, too). I could read the PDF on my computer as I eat breakfast (and I’m normally in front of my computer anyway at that time), and then continue reading it on my iPhone during my commute. And I could finish, if I wanted, by accessing my email via webmail on my computer at work. I would so dig that.
I’m guessing that any newspaper publisher would want some sort of copy-protection of their digital newspaper. I’m not sure how sophisticated PDF encryption can be, but maybe it can be tied to the device’s MAC address so it can only be read on a limited number of machines that are “registered” with the subscription (with a maximum of 2 devices allowed per account)? Or perhaps one could pay even more for an unencrypted version to have the freedom to read it on any number of machines?
I lean toward PDF rather than a web-version since web access isn’t everywhere yet (I lose my Edge signal in the tunnel and in some places in my building at work). And my geeky self can’t wait until wifi is everywhere, but that day is not yet here yet.
What do you think? Does this idea sound interesting to you? If there are enough people interested to make this a viable idea for newspaper publishers, this could be a possibility in the future…