Commercial Appeal paywall apparently goes live Oct. 2

Carole Tarrant, editor of The Roanoke Times newspaper in Virginia, tweeted some interesting comments from Commercial Appeal editor Chris Peck today, who spoke at a tablet/mobile strategies conference in St. Louis on the CA’s new paid digital strategy.

Guy Tasaka, a digital media consultant, also was on the panel speaking.

Tarrant tweeted that, according to Peck, the CA’s new paywall goes live Sunday, Oct. 2. There will be a 10-story limit per month, and it will cost $9.95 after that. Interestingly, she attributes to Peck the comment “Don’t expect much traffic impact.”

She said that Peck, in response to the question of whether there will be a different story selection process for the paper’s digital iteration, said “This is still a work in progress.”

According to her, Peck also estimated that $400,000 was spent on consultants, about the same in staff time, to develop the paper’s digital strategy. “Big investment risk.” She also tweeted that Peck said:

“Memphis has steep challenge – poorest big U.S. city. Much room to grow paid digital? Don’t know.”

And

“Proud we haven’t degraded our journalism while pursuing this strategy.”

Tarrant tweeted that Tasaka said “Memphis was never going to see huge digital growth but paid strategy could ‘future proof their business.’”

For more details, see this story by Daily News reporter Sarah Baker.

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