Om Malik’s GigaOm is making a bid to go where no blog has gone before. It will launch a premium service subscription service which will cost $79 a year.
The move is interesting and not necessarily bound to fail, although Om knows better than most the effect the Internet has had on tech journalism and and newsletters.
So far, there have been few sites that have been able to pull off the stunt, the exceptions being the Wall Street Journal and Japanese wire service nikkei.net, which both charge subscriptions for their services.
GigaOm Pro, according to Om Malik himself, says that even when he started the wire back in 2006, “it was fairly obvious that you couldn’t build a next-generation media entity by relying on advertising as your sole revenue source”. Actually, it is still possible, provided you have the page views and clever advertising people who can use those page views to exploit advertising niches.
What is clear is that you can’t build up such a web site unless you’re free of the overheads large media corporations have.
GigaOm Premium will offer in-depth research reports on various topics – so we’re not really talking journalism here, we’re talking more about the products sold by market research companies such as Gartner, IDC and iSuppli.
If people are going to pay for such content, it has to be good because the Web has inclined to make people think information is free. There’s more details of the new service, here.