300 newspapers now have paywalls
August 29, 2012
Mention newspaper paywalls and the first paper that comes to mind is The New York Times, which introduced one more than a year ago, believing, rightly it turns out, that its devoted readers would pay to read the paper in sufficient numbers to more than offset any decline in advertising revenue resulting from a dropoff in traffic from casual readers.
Perhaps what's surprising is the large number of smaller papers around the country that have followed The Times' lead.
There are now 300 papers with some form of online paywall in place, and that number has doubled in just the last year, according to Newspapers & Technology, a newspaper industry trade publication.
They include a majority of Gannett's 80 U.S. Community Publishing papers and a similar share of papers belonging to Lee Enterprises , which publishes in 52 markets. The Los Angeles Times introduced its subscription plan in March.
What's driving the trend, of course, is the search by publishers for new revenue sources to offset declines in print revenue. But it won't be known for some time whether paywalls will deliver on that hope.
Two issues loom, and first is the business of retraining readers to pay for something they got for free for so many years, and that's likely to be a protracted endeavor. Publishers will be tinkering with what to charge readers to maximize revenue.
The other related issue is one of content.
To get readers to pay, many papers may be forced to make heavier investments in editorial to come up with an online product with enough unique content to justify even a minimal monthly fee. Against the advice of analysts, papers have been slashing newsroom staffs for years, and the result too often is a paper that offers less local news than area TV stations.
Tags: Community Publishing, decline, gannett, lee enterprises, new york times, new york times paywall, newspaper paywalls, newspapers, Newspapers Technology, online, papers, paywalls, print, traffic, tv
For Fox, some rougher times ahead
Jon Swallen on changes in the media economy
Welcome to Central Perk, 20 years later
‘Tim & Eric’s Bedtime Stories,’ sip a few
Tell us, which new fall TV shows will survive?
For buff dating, some boffo ratings
Cable overnights: ‘Sons of Anarchy’ stays No. 1
Study: TV still dominates video time
There she is (on Twitter), Miss America
Networks to media: DVRs are really, really important
Big jump for penultimate ‘America’s Got Talent’
A bit of advertiser backlash for the NFL
Limp second quarter for ad spending
- Guy Vidra becomes CEO at The New Republic
- Tim O’Connor becomes corporate sales managing director at Meredith
- Molly Battles becomes men's group PR manager at Bonnier
- Caleb Weinstein becomes EVP of affiliate distribution at Fox International
- Donny Hudson becomes EVP of sales at America CV
- Jodi Lipe becomes SVP of marketing at Ovation
- Ari Osur becomes VP of product marketing at Simulmedia
- Patrick Jager becomes EVP and CEO at Everwise/Banner Media
- Bill Hader hosting NBC's 'Saturday Night Live'
- Mark Feuerstein joins Showtime's 'Nurse Jackie'
- Gloria Steinem guesting on CBS's 'The Good Wife'
This week’s cable ratings
This week’s broadcast ratings
This week’s top movies, songs and books
This week’s daypart ratings
This month’s new media traffic data
This week’s younger viewer ratings
Needed ASAP: Media buyer in Fort Worth
Job for media buyer/planner with DC PR agency
Programmatic media buyer job in York, Pennsylvania
Media buyer opening in Las Vegas
Immediate opening for a media buyer/planner