As local UK newspaper group Tindle Newspapers announced plans yesterday to introduce pay walls to around 40 of its websites, an experiment trialling the charging system on six of its titles was hailed a success by the publisher.
The system uses digital edition software PageSuite and interestingly enough charges the same price for the e-edition online as the print edition of a title.
“That runs counter to the conventional wisdom that reader expectations and the lower distribution costs of the internet mean online charging should represent a hefty discount on the price of the print product,” notes Chris Tryhorn.
Amongst the trial papers, 350-400 paying online readers signed up on the Tavistock Times’ site, compared with a circulation of 14,000, reports Tryhorn.
Against conventional wisdom, deceptively simple, but perhaps more in line with what readers are willing to pay for when it comes to local news?