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Summary:

After months of silence, News Corp.’s UK wing News International has put some details on its plans to turn Times Online paid-only, in a big…

After months of silence, News Corp.’s UK wing News International has put some details on its plans to turn Times Online paid-only, in a big flagship announcement. We’ll run it in full because it’s so significant.

Update: See exclusive preview of the forthcoming websites.

The key points…
— £1 a day, £2 for a week’s subscription – a compelling argument to go for a week.
Coincidence? The £1 cost is the same as the daily print paper.
— Customers get access to both sites. Print subscribers get free web access.
— Premium mobile? “New applications” including iPhone apps will also be paid-for. There will also be tablet editions.
— Rebrand? Note, Brooks is calling the new daily site “TheTimes.co.uk”, not “Times Online”.

News International is using the “all for the price of a cup of coffee” comparison. Matching the £1-a-day print price will fuel the fire of those who suspect the aim here is really to drive people back to paper. But the Times is promising plenty of online-native innovation, too.

Guardian.co.uk: “Assuming that only five percent of daily users convert to the paywall system

  1. That sound you hear is champagne corks popping at the Guardian and BBC.

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  2. This has been on the cards for some time. I’m curious to see if they go through with the threat to exclude search engines from getting the content – go on I double dare you…

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  3. “TheTimes.co.uk will make the most of moving images, dynamic infographics, interactive comment and personalised news feeds.

    woohoo!

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  4. Premium online broadsheets? Possibly.
    Tabloids like The Sun simply provide content that rises to the top in aggregation sites through trending anyway. Difficult to see how this would work.

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  5. Pay-walls could loose vast ads revenue streams.

    As most revenues in the media come from advertisements it is logical to say that restricting access will only hit ads revenue streams so As I said before ‘Cut Your Nose Off to Spite Your Face’ please do. So prepare to have your investors ads money disappear Murdoch, for who will advertise in a Newspaper when it has a very limited audience?

    Russian entrepreneurs are moving into UK based mainstream media, so maybe goodbye Murdoch, eventually?

    It is noteworthy that since the The Evening Standard was bought by a Russian business man they can now afford to give the paper away FREE in the Streets of London, now another Russian entrepreneur has bought The Independent.

    As I said before ‘Cut Your Nose Off to Spite Your Face’ please do.

    Signed Carl Barron Chairman of agpcuk
    http://carl-agpcuk.livejournal.com/

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  6. The decision by News International to charge for access to their websites is a really interesting move. Meltwater applauds the innovation of new business models for online content. Everybody benefits from a thriving and successful global publishing sector; any move that can mitigate the financial challenges in the media sector is a positive.

    Many publications – such as the Wall Street Journal for example – have already gone down this route and others are considering the same.

    The ongoing challenge for publishers, in the aftermath of installing pay walls, will be to ensure their customers are aware of the valuable and compelling content being created by their journalists. This could very easily be content that readers would be more than happy to pay for, but which they might not even know exists. Getting the balance right between the availability of free content and access to paid-for content will be crucial.

    As a truly global media monitoring company, Meltwater believes we can play a valuable role in this regard. We are already creating global awareness of restricted content behind login pages and pay walls for numerous media outlets such as the Financial Times. We promote and market their restricted content to a global audience of potential paying readers and thereby drive traffic and revenue for our partnering publishers.
    Jorn Lyseggen, CEO of Meltwater (http://meltwater.com/en/who-we-are)

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  7. guardianofrighttoread Tuesday, March 30, 2010

    I do not agree with this charge, All those who advertise with you pay it, all you are doing is widening the divide between the poor and rich and making the Media another cog in the wheel in the division of classes. It never ceases to amaze me that the Media will use anyone to get information, but will price it so that only those who can afford it can read it. I have been reading and contributing to the Times online for sometime £1 per day is too steep £1 per week is too steep £10 per year would seem to be more appropriate. or an adverage magazine subscription of £20 per year. you are charging more than the Government charges for car tax and insurance on a small vehicle for a year.How can that be right.???

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  8. Some might argue that journalism delivers a lot more value than the Government charges for car tax and insurance on a small vehicle for a year:-)

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  9. Stephen Williamson Wednesday, March 31, 2010

    As a avid reader of the times online(the concensus being that as a newspaper it is exactly that a paper with news in it as opposed to a 3 minute read of a comic)and as i am a incapacitated man obviously my income will not allow me to pay this fee i will miss my everymorning read and posting my comments,i thought that this simple pleasure would no last long as in the words of my Father nothing any good is for free

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