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Tuesday, June 03, 2008

There won't be such a thing as free content on the Internet

Nikesh Arora, president Google for Europe, Middle East and Africa and vice president Google UK, believes that the web economy will evolve just like the print economy - and that means people will pay for content online, writes Stephen Brook.

"The business model on the web is going to be no different to the business model today," Arora tells the audience at the World Editors Forum at the World Association of Newspapers 2008 conference.

People pay for books, they receive free information, supported by advertising, they pay for premium content, such as Bloomberg terminals. "The web will be no different....There's going to be a spectrum," he said.

Arora hinted that the current situation of a mass news on the web could eventually change. "There's some degree of commoditisation on the web, when that happens, price falls." And in such an environment, Arora says, media organisations will need "more readers and more viewers" to bring in profits.

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