I downloaded the free Wall St. Journal app for the iPad, just to see if there was something worthwhile. I used to subscribe to the print version of the Journal and liked it a lot. I got the iPad app to work, after chopping through the thicket of registration screens and admonishments.
I figured I'd get about 2 weeks of hassle free time to check out the app and see what kind of content they are putting out for the iPad. No dice. I kept getting a registration screen. So I deleted the application.
I don't understand something: startup companies like Yelp, Twitter and FourSquare toil for months or years to build a following and then try to figure out how to capitalize on the mass audience they've assembled. Newspapers have large audiences in the print world and can't seem to figure out how to tease a substantial portion of that audience into the online world. The production and delivery costs of online media are much lower, and so you'd think that the newspapers would be desperate to transport their paper readers to online media.
And then comes the iPad, a device perfectly suited to making that transition possible. And what do newspapers like the Wall St. Journal do? They want to charge almost the same amount of money for the online version as the print version. And they can't figure out how to let early adopters on the iPad consume their content free to get them hooked. Maybe they should fire all the executives at the newspapers and replace them with drug dealers. At least the drug dealers understand how to get new customers hooked on a product before exploiting them.