One week of free Evening Standard

If Twitter shows the wisdom of the crowd, London readers seem to be happy with the Evening Standard going free. However, quite a few are still disappointed with thelondonpaper being closed down.

If London Lite would have closed down, the people behind The Evening Standard would also be happy as the great move towards free is somewhat spoiled by the fact that Lite is still around spoiling the market for the Standard.

Also puzzling is that the Evening Standard (25% owned by Associated) can use the boxes of Metro (100% Associated) while Lite (100% Associated) is not permitted to do so.

The Evening Standard might not be the first or only free quality paper nor the first or only that made the move from paid to free, it is still the only one printing three different editions: throughout the afternoon. This is of course also making it a rather expensive model (together with a huge staff and daily 64 pages).

The secret of successful free papers, in most cases, is having a small staff, spending as little as possible on printing and distribution (and having no competitors). But maybe the Standard will be the exception.

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