05/27/2005 10:05 am ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Let Them Drink Martinis

Don't you love it when corporate suits reveal just how out of touch they are?

At a media conference yesterday, Martin Nisholz, president of New York Times Digital, defended his company's decision to start charging $50 for online access to the Times' archives and its columnists.

"There comes a point at which you have to say, 'Where is the value equation?' when you are talking about online media," Nisenhold said.

He then added: "For the cost of roughly two and a half martinis, you can have access to the entire archives."

Hmmm...I don't know about you, but I'm not throwing back $20 martinis. If Nisholz is, the Times is either a) paying him too much, or b) needs to give his expense account a closer look.

But what the paper really needs to consider is how offensive that "let them drink martinis" view of the world is... and whether such a dismissive attitude towards the vast majority of newspaper readers serves the paper well.