Friday, January 25, 2019

Restricted access

It looks very much as though the days of free access to the frequently brilliant and occasionally infuriating music site Pitchfork are numbered. Owners Conde Nast have announced that all of their titles will be behind paywalls by the end of this year. The reasoning, presumably, is that advertising revenue alone is proving to be insufficient to support the sites.

My initial reaction to the news, I admit, was one of irritation. I regularly refer to articles on Pitchfork and don't want to lose easy access to all of that content. However, the fact is that if you feel as though writers should be properly compensated for their work (as I generally do), then that money has to come from somewhere, and the most obvious source is the consumer. Pitchfork's content is of sufficiently high quality that people will willingly cough up for it, and it would be somewhat hypocritical on my part to moan about being expected to write for free on the one hand and about being expected to pay for access to articles on the other.

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