I am Tom Freeland, a lawyer in Oxford, Mississippi. The picture in the header is my law office. I'm on Twitter as NMissC

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Watching the Clarion Ledger shrink and shrink until it finally disappears.

Gannett’s papers, including the Clarion Ledger, are going behind a paywall this year.  It will work like the one at the NY Times:  You get a few free articles a month and then have to pay:

The vogue for digital paywalls sweeping the news business has made it all the way to the top:Gannett, the nation’s largest newspaper publisher, is planning to switch over all of its 80 community newspapers to a paid model by the end of the year, it announced during an investor day held in Manhattan Wednesday.

“We will begin to restrict some access to non-subscribers,” said Bob Dickey, president of community publishing. The model is similar to the metered system adopted by The New YorkTimes a year ago, in which online readers are able to view a limited number of pages for free each month. That quota will be between five and 15 articles, depending on the paper, said Dickey. Six Gannett papers already have a digital pay regimen in place.

There is one Gannett title, however, that will remain free, at least for the foreseeable future: USA Today

The Commercial Appeal has taken that approach, something I only learned about a week ago when I got the “You’ve reached the limit!” message.

I sympathize with these paper’s need to find a business model that generates revenue from their content.  But the Clarion Ledger’s coverage has become so weak– they didn’t even send a reporter to the supreme court argument in the pardons case!*— that I can’t imagine paying a monthly fee to read it.  What this means is that I will read it even less.

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*Update and possible correction:  Kingfish, who was there, writes in comments they did send a reporter, although the story they ran on their website was the AP wire story on the argument.

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