Posted October 13, 2006 10:03 am by with 7 comments

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One of the biggest reasons for PRWeb’s success was its free press release distribution. Lee Odden reports that option is about to go away.

Big news from PRWeb’s David McInnis to all PRWeb account holders last night. Free press release distribution will cease as of Oct 23rd.

I understand the economic reasons for the decision, but announcing it so soon after PRWeb’s acquisition is a little bit of sell-out. Can you imagine if, 60 days after Google’s announced acquisition of YouTube, they started adding ads to every video uploaded?

  • That’s a good point, but by getting rid of the free option, I wonder if it will significantly reduce the amount of crap people send out as a press release.

  • It would, but then adding an upload charge to YouTube would get rid of a lot of crap too. In both cases, it was the uploading of the crap that helped make them popular. 😉

  • The question is whether popularity = profit. It looks like PRWeb’s new owners have done the math and figured out that if they start charging for releases they’ll make more money, and while there are limits to what I would do for money, charging a fee for a service that provides real value seems reasonable to me. In fact, I’d almost welcome it if the fee were nominal, say $5-$10 per release. It would get rid of a lot of the junk on PRWeb (which I don’t believe is key to PRWeb’s success, whereas junk truly is part of YouTube’s success), and could potentially result in more improvements to the service.

  • I like the idea of a $10 min to keep the crap out.

  • Andy,
    I give it 24 hours after the ink dries on the contract before there are ads in You Tube videos. The free press releases on PR web turned PR web into a link farm and they paid the price with a major Google penalty. Maybe Google will take them seriously again and index the press releases.

  • Ads on YouTube before a video plays is a given in time. I suspect some commercial categories will require a charge.

  • I agree with Fionn, filtering out the freebies will remove a lot of the press release spam. PRWeb services have always been undervalued and this is a long overdue decision in my opinion.