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Arianna Huffington v. The Times... L’Oréal's Digital Play...

Arianna Huffington tossed another grenade in the direction of The New York Times during her luncheon address at a Gilt Groupe conference.

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ARIANNA V. THE TIMES: Arianna Huffington tossed another grenade in the direction of The New York Times on Wednesday afternoon, during her luncheon address at a Gilt Groupe conference. “The New York Times pay wall isn’t working,” she claimed. “It is so hedged and has so many exceptions that it should be called a hedge wall, not a pay wall.” She went on to contend that a site such as the Times cannot successfully go from free to building a pay wall. “The truth is, people are used to having that information for free.”

Huffington also discussed a common criticism of her own site: blogging without pay. “The truth is, self-expression has become the new entertainment,” she said. “Nobody ever asks why do people sit on the couch and watch bad TV for seven hours without getting paid. Now people have different sources of entertainment.”

Ever the saleswoman, she also talked about how the site continues to evolve, pointing to a new section — its 26th — about divorce. The section launched in November. “It’s now the sixth most popular section on the Huffington Post. It shows how quickly you can build a brand today.”

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