News Corp buys e-reader company Skiff

News Corp branched into the digital reader market with the acquisition of Skiff, a Hearst-backed company that helps distribute newspaper and magazine content to e-readers and other devices. News Corp also said on Monday it made an investment in Journalism Online, a company that helps publishers reap revenue from online news. The financial terms of the deals were not disclosed. News Corp’s latest investments underscore the company’s seriousness about charging for online news and delivering content on various devices. The deal for Skiff includes only the software distribution platform and does not include its e-reader device, which has not yet gone on sale to the public. The market for devices has become increasingly crowded, with competition from the likes of Amazon’s Kindle, Sony Corp Reader, Barnes & Noble’s Nook and Apple’s iPad tablet. Through Skiff, News Corp is hoping to be better positioned to distribute its content not only to the crowded field of e-readers but also to smartphones and netbooks. Journalism Online offers to help publishers charge for content in a variety of ways, including subscriptions and micropayments to access individual articles


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