By Mercedes Bunz: News International is to pull its UK titles’ content – including the Times and the Sunday Times, the Sun and News of the World – from the aggregation and archive service Nexis.
NI content will stay on the related B2B platform, Lexis. It is understood that the decision has been made for commercial reasons and is not directly related to today’s announcement that the Times papers will start charging for content online from June.
An exact date hasn’t been confirmed, but it was made clear that there will be no access to the content of these papers on Nexis from around the time the paywall goes up. LexisNexis hasn’t commented yet.
LexisNexis specialises in legal documents, and works closely with the The Times regarding their daily law reports as an ideal reference source for practitioners because they may be cited in court. It is unclear if this association is affected by News Corp.’s decision.
News Corp (NYSE: NWS) will still keep contracts with other news aggregators, among them Factiva, the competitor of LexisNexis that was developed by Dow Jones and acquired by Rupert Murdoch in 2007. The monitoring service which up till now provided mainly research information for business, already exclusively hosts the Murdoch owned Wall Street Journal.
Recently, Times Online, the Sunday Times, the News of The World and the Sun started to block news aggregators such as NewsNow and Meltwater from crawling their content.
Even as the likes of the New York Times (NYSE: NYT) are trying to spread their content as widely as possible with Twitter and Facebook, Murdoch is removing more and more of his material from the open net.
While this move appears to be for commercial reasons, it might fit well with a long-term plan to erect a paywall around the whole Murdoch empire, which would push charging for content to a whole new level.
This article originally appeared in Â© Guardian News & Media Ltd..