For more than 100 years people have been parting with their hard-earned dollars to grab a copy of their local newspaper.
Paying for news is nothing new.
Local rags, as they’re affectionately known, are considered a product of worth, otherwise media organisations would not commit to the expense of printing them.
Whether readers are chasing the latest news, hunting down sport results, or wanting to hear what community events are coming up, they have been happy to part with their money to stay informed.
Last week, the Illawarra Mercury introduced subscriptions for website access – so online readers can support us the way our loyal print subscribers do, and help ensure the strongest possible future for regional, professional journalism.
Basically, we are moving with the times.
By charging for online access we are ensuring we keep a team of quality journalists and photographers here, on the ground, in the Illawarra. We are also a business.
Would you walk into a bakery, pick up a loaf of bread and walk out without paying for it? Similarly, would you get repairs done to your home and not pay the tradie?
The Mercury newsroom is a team of local people. A team of Illawarra-based journalists who cover the stories – good and bad – that need to be told, as they happen, in the region they call home.
Most of those stories are accessed via Facebook, Twitter, or other forms of social media.
“It's Facebook, Facebook has always been free how dare you tell me it's about the future of regional, professional journalism (you don’t need money for that) when it has nothing to do with it,” wrote one (now former) Facebook follower.
It’s important to note Facebook doesn’t produce stories shared on the Mercury’s Facebook page, the Mercury team does; and they’re all fact-checked and verified.
At the end of the day, you have a choice. For $3.75 a week – less than a cup of coffee – you get unlimited online access to the leading source of Illawarra news and sport.
Heck, you’ll even get a replica of the printed edition.
You’ll also be supporting local jobs – and acknowledging the tireless work done day in, day out by our journalists – in the process. Again, the choice is yours.