Silicon Alley Insider reports that a “turf war” has erupted at The New York Times, with both print and digital units within the company vying for control over iPad content distribution and pricing. According to the report, the Times’ print unit sees an iPad offering as an extension of the newspaper’s print distribution and is seeking subscription fees of $20-$30 per month for iPad content, while the newspaper’s digital operations unit sees such pricing as unrealistic and is pushing for a lower $10 per month pricing.
The dispute has apparently escalated all the way to the top of the Times Building, and top executives — presumably the same ones who secretly dined with Apple CEO Steve Jobs — are now debating which way to go. Among those supporting the $20-30 per month print circulation side is, we’re told, New York Times Media Group president Scott Heekin-Canedy.
The report notes that The New York Times is currently offering free access to its Web edition into 2011, making subscription costs for iPad-specific content of $20-$30 appear rather uncompetitive.