As someone who uses Blendle on a fairly regular basis, it works, but I’m not sure it’s going to save publishers from ad blocking or guarantee the future of most media publications.
The reasons there are simple:
- There are too many organisations and services providing news at the moment, to the point it likely outstrips demand by a fairly large amount. People will pay for content, sure. But will most of the publications out there have enough people willing to pay via a service like this to support their future operations? I’m skeptical.
- Many of the media organisations doing well on the site are absolutely massive companies with loads of employees, expensive offices, high operating costs in general, etc. That means they’ll need a huge amount of paying customers per article to keep it all running, or to severely cut back on their operating costs.
These could both then be issues for the platforms like Blendle themselves, since they’re basically relying on the existing media organisations providing the footwork and subsidising their own operations. So for every newspaper or website that struggles to stay afloat or outright goes under, Blendle and competitors are potentially losing future content or traffic.
I do hope micropayments are the future, but I fear that alone they’re not going to pay enough to subsidise large newspapers or media organisations, nor fund as wide a selection of papers and sites as adverts have.