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Posts Tagged ‘paywall’

Paid Content Model to Expand in Europe

“What we are trying to do is set up the biggest paid content experiment of all,” said Tomáš Bella, CEO of Piano Media. Addressing The Guardian’s Changing Media Summit on Wednesday, Bella talked about the mindset of the company as one that looks beyond the dualism of paid vs. unpaid—a mindset that seems to be paying off. The system allows readers to pay for access to a group of participating publishers. So far, the experiment has yielded promising results in the smaller markets of Slovakia and Slovenia: people are more likely to pay for this sort of inclusive paywall as opposed to paying for individual ones. The payment system has had no negative impact on traffic, and surprisingly, people even paid for content that was already free. “It is definitely not the articles we are selling,” said Bella, “we are selling peace of mind.” He likened it to the cable TV model of paying for a lot of channels, where most subscribers don’t watch most of the channels. Read more

New York Times Cuts Free Article Access By Half

The New York Times plans to cut the number of free articles non-subscribers can access each month by half, from 20 presently to just 10. The change takes effect in April.

NYT announces changesAbout a year ago, the newspaper site announced it would begin charging online readers for access to its stories and content accessed via NYTimes.com and its spread of tablet and smartphone apps. At the time, and since, the site offered 20 free articles per month, even to non-subscribers. Beginning next month, that goes down to 10 articles per month.

According to the Times, the change “strikes a better balance between visiting and subscribing”:

We think 10 articles a month, plus free access to our home page, strikes a better balance between visiting and subscribing. Most of our readers will continue to enjoy their Times experience without interruption. At the same time, the change provides us with an opportunity to convince another segment of our audience that what The Times has to offer is worth paying for.

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Gannett Latest Newspaper Chain To Put Up Paywalls

R.I.P. unlimited free online news. Possibly for real this time (at least from newspapers). The nation’s largest newspaper chain is said to be planning a  roll out of its paid model by the end of this year.

Forbes is reporting Gannett, the largest U.S. newspaper chain, which controls more than 80 newspapers around the country from small community papers to USA Today, apparently has plans to switch over its community papers to a tiered pay model this year. (One notable exception: USA Today.) The switch to a tiered paywall — where the first few stories per month are free — comes amid a renewed emphasis on digital-first news gathering, which has included handing out thousands of iPhones and iPads to news staffers at various properties.

From Forbes:

Gannett, the nation’s largest newspaper publisher, is planning to switch over all of its 80 community newspapers to a paid model by the end of the year, it announced during an investor day held in Manhattan Wednesday.

“We will begin to restrict some access to non-subscribers,” said Bob Dickey, president of community publishing. The model is similar to the metered system adopted by The New York Times a year ago, in which online readers are able to view a limited number of pages for free each month. That quota will be between five and 15 articles, depending on the paper, said Dickey. Six Gannett papers already have a digital pay regimen in place.

This news is hardly unexpected. Not only are other major newspapers and outlets heading in this direction, but Gannett itself has been toying with this model at some of its properties for some time and started actively testing this tiered model this month.

Jim Romenesko posted the paywall FAQ customers of those test sites received in January. According to that, subscribers continue to have unfettered access to all content on all platforms.

New York Times‘ New Paywall Vs. WSJ, Newsday

NYT.com paywall coming to a browser near you.

Today, The New York Times announced details of its new paywall, which hits Canada today and everyone else March 28. Print subscribers will get access with their subscription, but for the rest of the online community, perusing the Grey Lady’s content could cost you if you’re a regular reader (i.e. more than 20 stories per month).

There are, of course, workarounds and ways to game a paywall system, and they will be working out the kinks. (This isn’t, after all, NYT.com’s first foray into charging for online access). But on first glance, it appears the NYT is taking a middle of the road approach that will allow the casual reader to surf in and read their content without disruption, while gaining revenue from the daily and heavy readers who stick around. Whether this renewed attempt at a paywall works and actually succeeds at convincing people to change their mood about paying for online content or not will be watched closely as more papers and chains nationwide look for ways to recover their news-producing costs.

Read on to see how this new paywall stacks up to two other large newspapers with paywalls in place, the Wall Street Journal and Newsday.

To see that spreadsheet full size, click here. Or read the same information below.

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