The New York Times announced this week that they will no longer offer online access to any section of the paper unless you become a paid digital subscriber.
Beginning March 28th you will only be able to read up to 20 articles per month on www.nytimes.com before you are required to become a digital subscriber. The NY Times app will still be available free of charge with access to the Top News section but any other section will not be viewable until the user becomes a digital subscriber. The new subscription will range from $15 to $35 per month depending on the package. This isn’t the first time The New York Times tried to implement a paid online subscription, in 2005 the publication began a subscription for the online opinion section but retracted the paywall in 2007 after complaints and a drop in readership.
Since the New York Times is a leader in its field, this may be seen as a new movement for newspaper websites. As circulation continues to dip for a majority of newspapers and advertising revenues are drying up, the digital paywall may become a common trend for all publications. To keep up with the ever changing media world- newspapers have to find new ways to increase revenue and readership.
To stay relevant in the social media world The New York Times will give followers the opportunity to read posted articles even if they are over the 20 article limit. The paper is also placing a limit on articles accessed through the search engine Google – five. The paper seems to be trying to close a loop hole here since they recognize the amount of online traffic directed through Google. But it also presents a risk for the paper for the same reason.