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Take my money: Why you're paying for free media willingly - CNET

Year-ender-media-2

By many standards, 2017 was a dismal year for digital media.

Once-buzzy publishers deflated. Hoax reports infected our searches and social feeds after tragedies. All those "fake news" stories about politics last year? Yeah, it turned out to be worse than we imagined. And on YouTube, 2017 first brought ads next to repugnant videos, then the stuff of nightmares for our kids, and finally, to wrap up the year, child exploitation.

But this year also marked a turning point. Many of you realized that free online media sometimes can come with steep, hidden costs like the exposure of your personal information -- so you opened your wallets. The trend underscores an underlying shift in our internet-connected society, in which consumers are more willing to subscribe for the media they love.

There's a growing appreciation for services or publications that help cut through the noise.

Martin Baron, executive editor of The Washington Post, says readers have increasingly decided to...(continued)
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