David Mitchell on Rupert Murdoch and The Times paywall

I love David Mitchell. If you’re reading this David, and want to propose, I will say yes.

I know I’m not alone – I’m sure there are thousands of other women who feel the same. We really shouldn’t underestimate the power of humour when it comes to seducing a woman.

Just look at some of the other men I have been drawn to over the years – I think most of my friends would vouch for the fact that not many of them were exactly ‘lookers’, (not that I’m implying you would fall into that category David), and several of them actually had quite serious personality issues, but somehow you are blind to that when you’re laughing out loud.

Anyway, that wasn’t supposed to be the point of this post. What I actually wanted to do was draw your attention to Mitchell writing for The Observer today about The Times paywall, and asking why it is that everything connected with Rupert Murdoch is automatically classed as Evil and Wrong.

Whether or not you care about the subject, reading anything Mitchell writes is entertaining. When I grow up, I want to be as funny and clever as him.

He raises an interesting point though. The internet has had a catastrophic effect on print media. I used to work at my local paper and since I left a few years ago the remaining staff have been forced to take on more and more work as sales and profits fall – people leave but aren’t replaced, weekends are worked, the pressure builds, and it is surely only going to get worse?

The other point that really interested me was the idea that people only really value something that they pay for. This has really come home to me since I became self-employed – it’s almost like the more you charge, the better people assume you are going to be. Instinct is often to try and offer the best deal possible, to be as cheap as you can, but what message does this send to your customers?

It is an important lesson to learn in all aspects of live, that other people will only value you as highly as you value yourself.

So, with this in mind, I’ve decided to start charging people to read my blog. You know it’s worth it. I’m going to set up a little jar by the door – please put in 50p every time you come in. Or leave a present.




  1. 11 July, 2010 / 8:50 am


    If you put up one of those little ‘Donate’ paypal buttons, I would gladly contribute. I know you were kidding, but I think it is worth it. If nothing else, I am going to click on that ad and see what they have to say, it is the least I can do, for having enjoyed your writing so much.


    • 11 July, 2010 / 8:51 am

      That is weird. There was an ad for Nextel below your post, then after I posted the comment, the ad was gone. Very strange. I have seen google ad sense ads on your post before, but those too disappear.

      I wonder if someone is messing with your blog? Next time I see it, I will take a screen shot.

      • 12 July, 2010 / 1:20 pm

        Hmmm… that’s weird, I never see any ads? I hope they are for interesting things and not anything unglamorous like constipation remedies.

    • 12 July, 2010 / 1:19 pm

      Ooh! Maybe I should then! I fear you’d be the only person donating though Brian :-)

  2. 11 July, 2010 / 8:52 am

    I agree David is hilarious, I would even go as far as to question if he isn’t the thinking women’s crumpet for the new decade?

    Funnily enough though, I was offered an app trial a few months back so I could charge users for content on my blog which I found more special than the rest. Apparently its all the rage already with Mom Bloggers in the US, and I’m assured its only a matter of time before it happens here. Although I turned it down as I thought it would make my blog unreachable. Verym Murdoch-esque!

    • 12 July, 2010 / 1:22 pm

      Definitely the thinking woman’s crumpet!

      Intersting about the charging app – I can see some people might donate through paypal if they were feeling particularly generous, but I can’t see anyone paying upfront without having seen the content already. Still, if it’s big in the US already it’s probably only a matter of time before it catches on here.

  3. 11 July, 2010 / 9:49 am

    Wow, such a profound and wonderful statement – “people will only value you as much as you value yourself.” You have a very brilliant mind young lady. I am sure that David is sitting a home right now wanting to propose but finding himself to in awe of you!

    • 12 July, 2010 / 1:22 pm

      THAT would explain why he hasn’t been in touch yet – he’s feeling intimidated by my superior intellect obviously :-)

  4. 11 July, 2010 / 10:29 am

    ha ha, just 50p?

    I have a bit of a thing for David too, and comedians in general, and people in power, authority, the public eye, cooking… Dr Hilary Jones, Duncan Ballantyne, Peter Jones, Hugh Fernley-W, David Cameron…. I could go on and on.

    But yes, the point you were making is exactly what I tell my husband (he is self-employed too).

    (that was £3.50 please, to read this comment)

    • 12 July, 2010 / 1:24 pm

      Well I’ll start off with just 50p until people are properly hooked.

      I’m with you on most of those but David Cameron??? He may be PM but he doesn’t really strike me as powerful. I do like a lot of comics though – I’m a big fan of Hugh Dennis and the one from Mock the Week with the funny teeth.

      (Cheque for £3.50 in the post).

  5. 11 July, 2010 / 10:31 am

    If you want David I am afraid you have a fight on your hands. Never before have I been attracted to men who wear maroon shirts and brown trousers but for him I will make an exception….

    • 12 July, 2010 / 1:24 pm

      Right, I’ll wrestle you for him…

  6. 11 July, 2010 / 11:21 am

    quick i must quickly try to redeem myself… duncan BANNATYNE, not ballantyne or whatever it was i wrote. was having a brain storm. (altho up until recently i thought it was duncan valentine. sorry i digress, i will go now

    • 12 July, 2010 / 1:25 pm


      Duncan Valentine would be much lovelier :-)

  7. 11 July, 2010 / 4:09 pm

    Great post however in my world the internet is free so if you think I’m going to pay for your blog, however brilliant, you’re sorely mistaken.

    • 12 July, 2010 / 1:25 pm

      *rethinks get rich quick plan*

  8. 12 July, 2010 / 9:34 am

    Hiya, it’s true price is a value judgement. When I first starting working for myself I severely under-charged (most women do!) It wasn’t until I put a realistic consulting charge up that I started to land excellent contracts. Strange thing though is that when I started taking blogging seriously I was nervous about trying to make a living from it. All other writing – freelance, marketing etc – I expect to be paid, but not blogging. Why? I’ve put up a paypal on my site but no one has donated. I think that speaks volumes about our expectations on creative work on the internet.

    • 12 July, 2010 / 1:30 pm

      It’s weird isn’t it? All these thousands of professional writers sharing their words with the world for free…

      You are so right though. I was talking about this with a friend yesterday and we decided we should basically quadruple all our prices for every piece of freelance work we do :-)

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