Articles about "Paywalls"


San Jose Mercury News homepage. (mercurynews.com/Sehwa Huh)

Digital First will add paywalls at most of its daily newspapers

Digital First | Newsonomics

Digital First Media plans to expand its paywall offerings to most of its 75 daily newspapers, CEO John Paton says in a blog post. The paywalls will be an all-access model. Paton, a noted skeptic about paywalls in the past, writes that while “digital advertising has grown more than 89 percent,” the company needs “more gas in the tank if we are going to complete this journey of print-to-digital transformation.”

Let’s be clear, paid digital subscriptions are not a long-term strategy. They don’t transform anything; they tweak. At best, they are a short-term tactic.

I’m not sure that’s a meaningful distinction,” Ken Doctor writes about Paton’s strategy/tactic taxonomy.… Read more

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For Modern Farmer, farm stands hold more promise than newsstands

When Modern Farmer launched its GoatCam in September, Editor-in-Chief Ann Marie Gardner was surprised to hear from people working at the Pentagon.

“They had a suggestion for changing the angle of the camera so they could see the goats better,” Gardner said in a phone interview.

Gardner (Photo by David Harriman)

Modern Farmer is proving adept at finding audiences in places one wouldn’t expect. Since launching this past April, its article on why cow-tipping is nearly impossible has become a viral hit, BuzzFeed’s Katie Notopoulos has written about how to behave at a farmers market and President Clinton has jawed about farming in its pages. (He remembers he once “badly lost a head-butting contest to a ram.”)

The Hudson, N.Y.-based publication offers a daily report online as well as a quarterly print magazine.… Read more

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Richmond Times-Dispatch readers get digital discount if they consent to print

Print and digital subscriptions to newspapers generally work like this: If you subscribe to the print product, you get free digital access. But if all you want is digital, you can pay a little less.

Not so in Richmond.

The Times-Dispatch launched its All Access paywall Tuesday that charges more for those readers who want digital access to the website but don’t want newspapers delivered to their doorsteps. After introductory rates expire, each print subscription option — seven-day, six-day, either of two four-day options, or Sunday-only — will cost a flat $19 per month with digital access included. Meanwhile, digital access without print costs $21 per month.

So is the model forward-thinking and digital-first or is it mostly an attempt to boost print circulation while there’s still some money to be made there?… Read more

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Buffett-owned Richmond Times-Dispatch introduces paywall

Richmond Times-Dispatch

Giving away content online no longer can be sustained,” Richmond (Va.) Times-Dispatch Publisher Tom Silvestri writes in a letter to readers. “Not if we want to be around for another 160-plus years serving the Richmond region and Virginia with the kind of news reporting that makes a difference and advertising deals that delight.”

The Times-Dispatch’s “All Access” plan, coming Tuesday, will operate in a manner now familiar to paywall observers: People who don’t subscribe to the paper will be able to see 20 stories per 30-day period without hitting a gate. Videos, obituaries, classified ads, section fronts and wire copy won’t count against the meter.

And subscription prices will rise next year, Silvestri says, when the paper “will install a comparatively small increase to cover projected higher costs, some of which result from this month’s rollout of new sections and added pages.”… Read more

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The International New York Times debuts

The first edition of The International New York Times appeared Tuesday. It replaces the International Herald Tribune. In a letter to readers on the front page, Times Publisher Arthur O. Sulzberger Jr. says his father “had the vision to make The Times a national newspaper in 1980.”

With today’s action, we are creating a single, unified global media brand, which will allow us to expand our digital hubs, grow our editorial team, add more international voices in news and opinion, and increase the coverage provided by some of our best writers from around the globe.

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Dallas Morning News to drop paywall Oct. 1

The Dallas Morning News

On Tuesday, The Dallas Morning News’ online content “will be accessible to everyone, free of charge,” a company press release says. It will also offer a premium service with “enhanced design and navigation, limited advertising, and access to unique subscriber benefits” to print subscribers; nonsubscribers will pay $2.99 a week, the release says.

Eric Celeste reported in August that the paper would lose its paywall.

The new site will be “radically different,” Sheryl Jean writes.

Readers of the paid site will see an image-oriented, collage display with far fewer ads (Web pages maintained by third parties also may contain ads). Eventually, more personalization and a loyalty program will be added to the site.

The free site will look just like The News’ current website with advertisements.

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USA Today president: ‘No plan exists’ for paywall

The New York Post | Folio

USA Today President and Publisher Larry Kramer said at a panel in New York that the paper is “exploring” a paywall, Keith J. Kelly reports. Reached by email, Kramer told Poynter, “No plan exists. We’re studying it.”

Kramer also said the paper will remove its trademark white boxes from some locations, Kelly reports. It expects sales from such boxes to decline by about one-third after a planned price hike from $1 to $2 next Monday: “Most people are not going to have eight quarters in their pocket,” Kramer told the panel.

When USA Today launched, Mike Feinsilber wrote that it was “pinning its multi-million dollar hopes on a streetcorner vending machine that looks like a television set on a pedestal.”

A USA Today box in Charlotte, N.C.
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Tampa Bay Times will erect a paywall

Tampa Bay Times
Poynter’s Tampa Bay Times will install a metered paywall on tampabay.com, charging readers who consume more than 15 pages per month, Times Chairman Paul Tash tells readers.

The Times’ “best customers get the best price, with discounts for subscribers to our print edition,” Tash writes. Some sections will not count against the 15-page limit:

Some parts of tampabay.com will continue to offer unlimited access. The meter does not count visits to the home page or to PolitiFact.com, our service that measures the truth of what politicians are saying. Readers also can tap into Things To Do, or the sections that advertise cars, homes and jobs, as much as they like.

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How two small family-owned newspapers in Vermont had success with a paywall

(This case study, the first of an occasional series, was underwritten by a grant from the Stibo Foundation. Poynter affiliate Bill Mitchell did the reporting for the article in 2012, and it has been updated and edited by Media Business Analyst Rick Edmonds, who is general editor of the project.)

Most discussion about online paywalls has focused on the big guys, and more recently, on big chains. The New York Times boasts of dramatic results from the wall it erected in March 2011 and its subsequent success selling all-digital subscriptions and print + digital bundles. Gannett is the largest of the many chains that have followed suit and seen growth in circulation revenues, up in 2012 industry-wide for the first time in years.

More and more smaller and mid-sized news organizations are investigating ways to charge for content online, but it is a more daunting task for small papers, especially independents.… Read more

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Bronstein: SF Chronicle paywall made a half-million dollars in four months

Bloomberg TV

“My understanding from people who work there is that they made probably close to $500,000 during the course of that four months,” former San Francisco Chronicle Editor Phil Bronstein tells Bloomberg West host Emily Chang about his old paper’s paywall, which it installed in late March of this year and disabled in August.

So why didn’t it work, Chang asks Bronstein, who is now the executive chair of the Center for Investigative reporting.

“Paywalls are an attempt to keep the audiences they have and keep them paying,” Bronstein, who stresses he wasn’t involved in the paywall’s installation, says. “But that audience is dwindling.” Journalists, he says, suffer from from “higher calling disease” and are scrambling to reconnect with an audience that now seeks news from many channels.… Read more

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