Friday, September 11, 2009

Star-Tribune Calls an Audible: Will Charge Online Readers for Vikings Coverage

Brett Favre In Minnesota Vikings Uniform On Sp...Image by DavidErickson via Flickr, will soon wall-off its "Access Vikings" coverage and begin charging readers for some of the content about their favorite football team, the Minnesota Vikings.

Terry Sauer, assistant managing editor for digital, confirmed that photo galleries, some columns, non-staff generated blogs, and reporter chats about The Men in Purple will soon carry a price tag, though much of the coverage of the team will remain free.

In 2002, the news outlet charged $30 for its "Purple Plus" expanded coverage, which drew only 1,000 subscribers. The failure was attributed in part to the team's travails, as they amassed a 6-10 record that season. Although the Star-Tribune is more optimistic about its latest venture, subscribers to the print edition, who pay more than $200 annually, may not be pleased about being asked to pony up so they can read online content about the "V-I-K-I-N-G-S, Skol Vikings, let's go!" for which they might believe they've already paid.

"TUOL" suggests the newspaper put all the "Access Vikings" revenue into a football pool and award the winnings to the reader who comes closest to guessing the number of concussions Vikings quarterback Brett Favre sustains during the upcoming season.
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