Rupert Murdoch... bringing in paywalls to fund his journalism.
Rupert Murdoch... bringing in paywalls to fund his journalism. Getty Images

News Ltd tipped to launch paywall for key site in May

REGULAR readers of The Daily Telegraph will be asked to pay for online content from mid-May when News Limited introduces a new two-stage metered subscription model, according to Mumbrella.

When contacted by industry newspaper News Now, a News Limited spokesperson would not confirm the speculation, but admitted the company has submitted an application for the domain name News+.

According to Mumbrella:

• The new two-stage subscriber strategy, called News Plus, will track cookies in order to monitor
reader's usage of its news sites.

• Once readers have accessed a certain number of articles, the first stage of the model will kick in and
ask readers to register their details.

Once a second quota of articles has been reached, readers will be asked to enter paid subscription.

• Under the new strategy, national masthead The Australian and the Herald Sun (Victoria) will switch
from a "freemium" paywall model which allows readers access to some free content, but places
other content behind a paywall.

• The Herald Sun, which introduced a "freemium" paywall in March 2012, will adopt the News Plus
metered model from mid-May.

The Australian, which was the first to charge for its content, in October 2011, will wait until the
new financial year to switch to the new model.

The company has previously said it would make an announcement on its digital subscription strategy soon and
News Ltd chairman Kim Williams has spoken openly about the company's plans to start charging readers for

It is not known whether the paywall will affect all 130 of News Ltd's Australian mastheads.

The Australian has around 40,000 digital subscribers, according to the latest Audit Bureau of Circulations figures.


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