If I have any time to sit down and read the print edition of the newspaper, it’s on the weekend. Those are the days I’m in less of a hurry to get out the door and I can sometimes sit there with my coffee and enjoy the paper, which for me is The Washington Post.
But this only happens on Sundays. Saturdays are out, not because I don’t have time, but because there are currently only two Washington Post subscription options: seven-days-a-week or Sunday only.
I could sign up for seven-days-a-week but I don’t need it Monday through Friday. I could also go out and pick up a copy of the Saturday paper, which I occasionally do, but that kind of ruins the whole read-it-in-your-pajamas-while-you-drink-coffee-and-eat-breakfast experience.
Several years ago, I heard a member of the Post‘s staff propose a weekend only subscription during a washingtonpost.com online chat (their name escapes me and I can’t find a link to it) and I’m a fan of this.
I would guess there are a good number of people in my situation—we’re unlikely to sign up for everyday delivery, but the Post could be making more money off us if they had a way for us to get Saturday and Sunday delivery, rather than just Sundays.
Perhaps the Post fears they’ll lose too many full-time subscribers who would downgrade to this option? There’s definitely the potential for this to happen. But the Post and other papers are losing subscribers already anyway, as more people get their news online.
I’m sure the Post has run and continues to run through various options and scenarios. But as new models for the news business are discussed, maybe its worth giving more consideration to the fact that there might be quite a few people who are online news consumers most of the time, yet who would still be willing to pay to have the option of sitting around with the old school paper on not just Sunday but Saturday as well.