Jeff Bezos, the CEO of Amazon, will soon be the owner of the Washington Post. Bezos is arguably the best tech CEO in the world today and probably does not need my help. However, my experience with the New York Times might prove useful.
I subscribed to the NYT for 37 years and then dropped my subscription in favor of other online news sources about three years ago. About two years ago I discovered the NYT Skimmer, a beautifully designed, ad free (in the copy) version of the NYT. The design was so well done that I did not think it was a NYT offering. I have been reading the Skimmer faithfully for two years and the design has even encouraged me to read sections I never read before (e.g. obituaries). First point for Jeff Bezos, please offer a skimmer version of the online WP with a clean, modern design.
Recently, the NYT Skimmer changed its policies. Now to view a second story in a section (e.g. business, technology), you are presented with an ad to subscribe to the NYT. If you do not subscribe you are limited to one free story per section. The idea for Jeff Bezos to consider is rather than selling subscriptions, just sell individual articles in the Skimmer. Five or ten cents per article charged to a credit card works for me. I would pay that if it was automatically charged to the card. To avoid having to log in every day or every article to use the credit card, he could offer the WP Skimmer in a Kindle version (which is available for almost every computing device).
Just a thought.
Image credit: Guardian.com.uk