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By Brandon Formby, Dallas Morning News
Less than two years after shutting down a short-lived paid website, The Dallas Morning News plans to again start charging digital readers for access to online content.
DallasNews.com and SportsDayDFW.com on Tuesday moved to a metered model that will allow local digital consumers to read 10 free articles in a 30-day period. Once that limit is hit, readers can either purchase a digital subscription or wait for the 30-day clock to reset.
High school sports site SportsDayHS.com and entertainment sites GuideLive.com will remain free for all readers.
Mike Wilson, editor of The News, said the move to a meter will have little to no effect on how the organization approaches its coverage of the Dallas-Fort Worth area.
“It just seems like an appropriate business move,” Wilson said. “Our journalism is going to be what I hope it always has been: essential to people in North Texas.”
Piano’s David Restrepo is at the Code/Media conference in Dana Point, CA and listened to ESPN chief Jon Skinner talk about the future of ESPN. Apparently, David says, ESPN is working on getting its channels on more OTT streams across the web. He noted that Skinner said the customer won’t get just ESPN, but a “skinny bundle” that would include some other Disney channels.
ESPN President Jon Skinner at the Code/Media conference
David also had the opportunity to see Vice’s Shane Smith participate in a discussion about starting up a new cable TV channel called Viceland. Smith told the audience he thought it was a pretty great time to be starting a new channel as quality content is dominating user engagement.
David also sent this photo of a band playing (he didn’t say who) that was sponsored by Vevo. Turns out that Vevo could soon jump into the subscription race. CEO Erik Huggers told the crowd that a “more premium” subscription product is something that he’s mulled since taking the helm of the music video portal last April and that a fully ad-supported model is not sustainable in the long run.
It came as a surprise last week when the owner of the London quality daily, The Independent, announced he was shuttering the paper’s presses and going fully digital. Given the loss of print advertising revenue, declining subscriptions and sinking CPMs, is this really so shocking? Digital is cheaper to produce, there is no paper, no ink; there are no printing presses, no delivery trucks. By dumping print the Indy extends its opportunity to produce quality journalism and if you compare journalism to music, it make sense (from vinyl to MP3s). Let’s hope the Lebedevs are true to their word, reinvest the money they receive from the sale of the Indy’s sister paper i, back into the digital Independent.
Read more about what publishers are discovering in this week’s Industry Insights, available now!
We are excited that Piano’s Director of North American Sales & Business Development David Restrepo will be attending the code/media (#codemedia) conference, part of Vox Media’s re/code events, in Dana Point, CA starting tomorrow! This is an incredible conference with a lot of top media executives in attendance and plenty of interesting industry learnings to be shared. We welcome the opportunity to meet any of you who are also going. If you are interested in setting up a meeting with David, please send him an email.