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Wacky Tabloid Weekly World News Turns to LA Paywall Firm

Remember the Weekly World News, that black-and-white broadsheet next to the supermarket checkout that you used to scan regularly before Perez Hilton, TMZ and Radar Online?

Though it was interrupted by a more recent ownership change, it never fully went away. WWN migrated to the Web only in 2009 and has since slowly doubled its monthly way to a current Top 1,000 Quantcast ranking. However, as we all well know by now, Web traffic does not translate into similar-size bank deposits, so the publication has turned to MediaPass, an LA company specializing in paywall solutions, to help monetize the clicks. From tomorrow’s official announcement:

“We are excited to have a brand like the Weekly World News choose MediaPass to distribute their content in a way that will help them instantly generate revenue, but is also fair to their readers and makes sense within the current paradigm of online publishing and sharing,” said MediaPass CEO Matthew Mitchell. “As a digital-only publication now employing our paywall, there’s no reason they can’t generate the kind of revenue they did at the peak of their print existence…”

Added Weekly World News CEO Neil McGinness: “We were one of the earliest publishers to move to an online-only format. MediaPass is the best paywall solution on the market by far, and the most experienced at subscription monetization.”

Some of the other media sites MediaPass has worked with include PBS investment program Wealth Track and the digital archive of political cartoonist Daryl Cagle. A MediaPass rep tells FishbowlLA the initial WWN limit has been set at three free article views, but that this may be tweaked as things progress. There will also be some select content that is not metered at all.

A few years ago, WWN tried an e-mail paid-subscription model. The first headline for that effort was “Werewolf Sues Airline Over Flight Delay.” Let’s hope the plane took off before any full moons.

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