FT paywall pays dividends

Financial Times chief executive John Ridding has hailed the success of his newspaper’s paywall, reports MediaGuardian.

Subscription figures to the FT website reached 147,047 in June, up 27 per cent year-on-year. The paper has also announced that content revenues from print and online have grown 14 per cent year-on-year. And the FT’s owner, Pearson, has reported a 79 per cent increase in its operating profit for the first half of 2010.

Ridding said the original concept “was something of an experiment, based on a mixture of intuition, assumptions, guesswork and research.

“It soon became clear that it was working. The quality of our earnings improved. The subscriptions model is a more predictable guide to income, allowing for better planning and investment.

“What we hadn’t realised, and what may turn out to be of bigger benefit, is that it provides a deeper understanding our audience. Without contravening people’s privacy, the data supplied by users enables us to know much more about them, allowing us to observe patterns of interest and trends.” (Source: MediaGuardian)

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“Before we all sink into a slough of digital dystopian despair, it might be worth considering this: is this a sign of the strength, not weakness, of revelatory journalism in the digital age?”


Charlie Beckett, director of POLIS at the London School of Economics, reacts to news that the UK government forced the Guardian into destroying hard drives that contained information leaked by Edward Snowden.


(Source: POLIS)

 

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