A new twist on micropayments for news - gambling


I read the following story, in a press release by a gaming company Amuso, {link removed}. It appears that News Ltd may include online gaming in its websites attempts to charge customers for reading its news stories. Although I do not think that micropayments will work for news, this idea I think may work. As it makes payments voluntary.

News Ltd is to introduce gaming as the next part of its strategy to extract money from users of its news websites, with the launch of a pay-to-play trivia game on its Daily Telegraph website. Daily Telegraph Trivia will be a flash-based game embedded on the Telegraph site. Users will be charged in the region of $1.50 to play. The platform is being provided by the London-based company Amuso, which has an existing relationship with fellow News Corp company MySpace. Users will either be able to play for free or pay to enter games against other players with the entry fees pooled as a prize. Amuso already powers gaming across the world, so there will be an immediate pool of opponents. The contestants are able to communicate with one another via live chat during the game and invite friends to play too. Topics include general knowledge, entertainment, celebrity, music and movies. The technology is a simple, embeddable Flash widget, making it easy to roll out to other News Ltd sites if it makes good money for the Tele’s site. However, a spokesman for News Digital Media told Mumbrella: “At this stage it is just a Daily Telegraph initiative.” Barak Rabinowitz, the CEO of Amuso, said: “Having experienced great international success with companies such as MTV and MySpace, we are very excited to be launching into the Australian market with dailytelegraph.com.au.” Michael Robinson News Digital Media’s CEO of media, said ”Our users will now be able to take advantage of world-class gaming technology.” Amuso is bankrolled by Mangrove Capital Partners, one of the founding investors in Skype. The move is the latest by News Corp as the company seeks to widen the revenue streams for its news-based sites beyond advertising. Boss Rupert Murdoch has been signalling for more than a year that he intends for the company to start generating significant revenues from its online news sites. In the UK, News Corp is further down the path with Times Online set to charge users for 24 hour access and the Sun newspaper the biggest short haul travel firm in the UK.