Tag Archives: WSJ.com

Paywall subscribers worth a quarter of print counterparts, claims survey

With TheTimes.co.uk and SundayTimes.co.uk still not releasing traffic figures through the Audit Bureau of Circulations, we can’t yet see the impact of the paywall in terms of browser figures. But according to research published by Enders Analysis, the value of a paywall subscriber is only a fraction of a print reader.

The research, carried out by Benedict Evans, compared annual incomes from subscribers for paywalled newspapers TheTimes.co.uk and WSJ.com with those for UK quality daily papers.

The main findings quoted online are as follows:

A newspaper paywall subscriber is worth only a quarter to a third of a print buyer: even if every single print buyer is successfully converted to the paywall, newspapers will still face a basic problem of scale.

Paywalls will not be able to compensate for lower revenue per reader by expanding the audience for paid news, due to the long term decline of circulation, free online news, 24-hour broadcast news and free-sheets.

Future change will be radical: publishers may need to consider producing a newspaper its loyal readers recognise and value with just 200 rather than 500 journalists.

Hatip: paidContentUK

WSJ confirms paid-for access to news on mobile

News Corp’s Dow Jones has confirmed speculation from earlier this week and announced that the Wall Street Journal will now charge for full access to its content via Blackberry, iPhone and iPod touch devices.

According to a press release, the WSJ applications will remain free to download for each device and continue to offer a mixture of free and subscription content.

The new access model will be introduced from October 24 and hopes to expand the paying audience for Dow Jones’ content by highlighting the specialist, time-sensitive nature of its news.

“Our new mobile subscription model will enable us to continue to invest in the world’s most essential news content and deliver it to our subscribers wherever and whenever they want it,” said Gordon McLeod, president of the Wall Street Journal digital network, in the release.

“This transition also reinforces the value of our content on mobile, just as we’ve done online for more than a decade.”

Full access to the site from these applications will cost $2 per week for a mobile-only subscription. A subscription to mobile and the WSJ in print or online will cost $1 a week.

Print and online subscribers will have free access to content via the smartphone apps.

Full access to the site’s mobile site will only be granted to WSJ.com subscribers, the release added.

Today UK website the Spectator announced it would introduced a range of subscription packages for its website with immediate effect.

Bill Grueskin: ‘What would Google do about newspapers?’

Guest blogging on Reflections of a Newsosaur, Bill Grueskin, the academic dean of the School of Journalism at Columbia University and former managing editor of WSJ.Com, offers his translation of comments by the Google’s vice-president of search products and user experience, Marissa Mayer, to the Senate commerce subcommittee hearing.

“Her elliptical comments at a congressional hearing on the sorry state of the newspaper industry revolved around a message that seemed to add up to: ‘Lotsa luck, fellas.'”

Full post at this link…

Bill Grueskin: A tale of two journalism start-ups

Former WSJ.com managing editor Bill Grueskin looks at ‘link journalism’ venture Publish2 and the recently launched Journalism Online, whose founders include an ex-WSJ publisher and the founder of American Lawyer.

Can Journalism Online’s founder translate their wealth of ‘traditional media’ experience online?

“One new firm seeks to generate much-needed revenue by building a platform for subscription services, another seeks to generate new forms of journalism with a platform to share and distribute content. It’s hard to reconcile those two visions of journalism’s future,” writes Grueskin.

Full post at this link…

WSJ.com: US local TV stations and their ‘fuzzy future’

An illustrative feature on why local television stations in the US face a fuzzy future. “Now, with their viewership in decline and ad revenue on a downward spiral, many local TV stations face the prospect of being cut out of the picture,” WSJ comments.

“Executives at some major networks are beginning to talk about an option that once would have been unthinkable: eventually taking shows straight to cable, where networks can take in a steady stream of subscriber fees even in an advertising slump.”

Full story at this link…

Gawker alleges computer cut-backs for WSJ.com staff

So Boris might give out Blackberries (well, ‘blackberry-type gizmos’) to Olympics spectators in 2012, but over in the States Wall Street Journal journalists are finding that their technology allowance is being cut back.

Or so this ‘internal memo’ on Gawker.com would have us believe. Is it for real? Apparently, all WSJ news staff have been told that a new money-saving measure is in place: ‘at its core is the concept of “one person/one machine.’

“If you are an office-based editor, you’ll get a new desktop. If you are a reporter or editor who travels on assignment, you’ll get a new laptop with a docking station, keyboard and monitor for office use.”

That’s what the alleged internal memo reads. Comments below the Gawker article are sceptical: surely the typos in the memo are a bigger story than the computer cuts, writes ‘drunkexpatworker’.

Hmmm. Authentic or not? It seems an odd kind of prank if not: it wasn’t that funny.

Online media consumption up by seven per cent, as a result of financial strife

Yesterday, Beet TV flagged up that a record number of users seeking online media information led to a seven per cent spike in traffic for Akamai, the delivery network which carries the internet flow for NBC, the BBC, Reuters and other news sites.

The current economic turmoil, hurricanes and the presidential campaign has helped boost the need for online information. At their peak, Akamai were registering 3.7 million requests per minute.

The spike follows a trend for online news sites doing well in times of financial strife: last month site traffic ‘exploded’ at the FT.com, as a result of the drop in share prices.

The need for information was felt on Wall Street, coinciding with a redesign of the Wall Street Journal Online. “Monday set an all time record of two million visitors”, a Wall Street Journal spokeswoman told Beet.TV.  Traffic on Tuesday was nearly as high.  “These are pretty big numbers, considering monthly unique visitors are 17 million,” she said.

The irony is that financial disaster, hurricanes and presidential elections seem to be a good thing for the world of online media.

What’s new in the WSJ.com redesign

The Wall Street Journal set its revamped site live today, so here’s a breakdown of what’s changed and what’s new:


  • Journal Community – a social networking feature for the site’s paying subscribers, which lets them comment on articles, ‘ask the expert’ and join topic-based networks and discussion groups
  • Subscriber-only sections marked with a key icon and available for preview by non-subscribers
  • Newsreel – a scrolling, horizontal panel topping article pages, which links to other top stories. (Seems to be on most US stories at the moment, as shown in the picture below)
  • New video player and slideshow viewer
  • A new WSJ.com mobile reader for the Blackberry
  • New management section – available to subscribers only


  • Expanded content across its What’s News, Heard on the Street, small business, technology, US and world news, politics, personal finance and lifestyle sections
  • Improved navigation – including horizontal menu bar across all pages
  • Redesigned article pages to support more multimedia content and provide ‘related analysis’

Paying subscribers to the site, which WSJ claims have risen to more than 1 million, will also have increased access to the site’s archive.