A year after its launch, the free community newspaper Selangor Times quietly went online this month at its own web site SelangorTimes.com with content from its weekly issues, and an archive of its PDF electronic issues.
The paper will continue to be published in its present form, as it depends on advertising for its revenue, being distributed at railway stations, supermarkets and similar much-frequented places.
There are no plans at present to turn SelangorTimes.com into another online newspaper or news portal, the paper’s editor KL Chan said.
It would be difficult to do so anyway. A completely online operation would require deep financial resources to last the long haul before it can tap into clearcut revenue streams, and it is unlikely that Selangor Times will have those kind of resources nor the staff.
The lack of dependable and sizeable revenues online is the same financial obstacle faced by other online news sites. (MalaysiaKini has a subscription base in addition to advertising revenue and selling its news content as a news provider; Malaysian Insider has some advertising and deep-pocket backers; and the other sites such as Free Malaysia Today and Malaysia Chronicle depend largely on their patrons.)