The Guardian is not against all charges for digital reading. It asks a token sum for its iPhone edition (£4.99 a year), and a more realistic one for the iPad (£9.99 a month). But it is fiercely resistant to charging for its website—a position it shares with the Mail, the Telegraph, the Washington Post and many others. Some editors stay out of these choppy waters, saying the decisions are made by their commercial colleagues. Rusbridger goes the other way—not only is he happy to defend the Guardian’s stance, he has built a theory around it. He calls it “open journalism”, and in March, in an online Q&A session with readers, he defined it: “Open journalism is journalism which is fully knitted into the web of information that exists in the world today. It links to it; sifts and filters it; collaborates with it and generally uses the ability of anyone to publish and share material to give a better account of the world.”
He has become quite evangelical about it.
That’s what worries me.