Dec 6 The Washington Post, one of the few major
newspapers not yet charging readers for online access to
newspaper articles, is likely to introduce a payment system next
year, the Wall Street Journal said, citing people familiar with
The sources said the newspaper is considering a metered
paywall, where its website permits readers a certain number of
stories free before charging a subscription fee, and is also
considering increases in the print newspaper's price.
The plans come as the Post grapples with steep declines in
its core business of print advertising, the Journal said, adding
that the newspaper division reported an operating loss of $56.3
million for the first nine months of the year, reflecting a 14
percent decline in revenue to $160.7 million.
The success of the New York Times's paywall program, which
was introduced about 18 months ago and now has more than 500,000
digital subscribers, has helped shape plans at the Washington
Post, the Journal said.
Moody's credit rating agency has called the U.S. newspaper
industry's outlook "negative" because of the "relentless"
declines in overall revenue.
Newspaper executives have long touted digital advertising as
a bright spot in an industry plagued by declining print
readership, which has seen widespread newspaper closures in the