The New York Times announces online subscription plan

By on March 17, 2011, 6:43 PM
The New York Times has finally acted on plans to charge for its web content. Starting March 28, heavy readers will have to pay $15 a month to access NYTimes.com and the paper's mobile app, $20 for the site and its iPad app, or $35 for all three platforms.

Subscribers to the physical paper will receive unlimited access across all digital platforms except e-readers like the Kindle and Nook, but this might change in the future. This will also apply to subscribers of The International Herald Tribune, which is NYT's global edition.

Again, that's just for regular readers. Casual visitors will still be able to open 20 articles per month without paying (this includes videos and slideshows). Once you crack that threshold you'll have to pony up -- though there are loopholes to access content for free.


The Times will grant free access to articles linked on social networks including Facebook and Twitter, as well as blogs and search engines. You'll only be able to read five articles a day that are linked from Google, but that restriction doesn't seem to apply to Bing.

Meanwhile, the homepage and all section fronts will remain open to everyone, as will the "Top News" section on the site's mobile and tablet apps. The NYTimes wants to make it clear that it's not implementing a total paywall like The Times of London and Newsday.

It's worth noting that the 20-article cap is effective immediately in Canada as the site needs time to find unresolved bugs before the feature is slammed by US visitors. Does this change affect your opinion of the paper? Will you subscribe to one of the packages?




User Comments: 13

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tonylukac said:

They are dreaming if they think web content is worth that much. Our subscription to the PRINTED edition of the Chicago Tribune is $34 for 3 months, and that's hand delivered.

How about some incentive like a free chromium pc or kindle with that subscription?

treeski treeski said:

I've never really cared for the NYT... so I'll pass.

Tekkaraiden Tekkaraiden said:

It was only a matter of time before one of the major newspapers attempted this.

Breech said:

Ridiculous. Who would pay for liberal, agenda oriented media in the first place when you can get actual news on talk radio for free. I'll stick with Limbaugh, Beck, and Hannity for actual reporting........something the NYT has no idea how to do these days.

gwailo247, TechSpot Chancellor, said:

I guess I'll have to turn to one of the other 400,000 papers in the world for my news.

Vrmithrax Vrmithrax, TechSpot Paladin, said:

And so, the countdown clock to the demise of the New York Times begins ticking in earnest...

They are asking way too much, with no "must have" hook. If we can get the same news and information for free anywhere else on the web, why would we pay that much for the NYT? Just because they have a slick app? Just to read their reporters' views on stories? Just as a status thing to say you read the NYT? No compelling reason to burn your money with them, that I can see.

Benny26 Benny26, TechSpot Paladin, said:

I think this is a mistake for the newspapers...People just go elsewhere like they have in the UK with some of our papers.

Guest said:

ummm breech, Murdock owner of fox (and all the right leaning media you indicated you like) owns The New York Times.

This his attempt to try and get all the news papers to adopt this model.

MrAnderson said:

If customers do not like it, they need to let NYT know now!

It feels like digital news subscriptions should be cheaper. What are we getting as customers? Subscription pricing models and account management need to be more flexible too. For example... stopping, starting, or halting a subscription, prorating invoces when stopped with in a posting period should be in place depending on the representation and frequency of what the definable digital product of ?News Edition? is.

The gateway to getting the news in any format should not be an opportunity to nickel and dime customers. Pay once access anywhere where reasonable should be the game. Thus, customers should not have to pay for apps to get it on your iPad, iPhone, Android, PC etc... it should be 1 price or almost so cheap you will not think anything of it. More over they need to develop better tools to shift through all the information to take advantage of the digital medium. Moreover, customers on a subscription should have access to the full back catalogue... ala Netflix style ... a NewsFix of sorts.

They save on printing and distribution. Some of the savings need to be used to improve the quality of the product where editing and proofreading the information is lower in the digital space as compared to the printed media. I'm not going to say the NYT has done it, but I have notice an over all lack of quality over the years in digital content vs. printed media because digital release cycles are so fast. It?s the same across all fields that digitally distribute content Print and interactive, with the exception of Movies.

Mizzou Mizzou said:

This is simple, I don't read the NY Times and don't plan on reading the NY Times ... even for free.

Guest said:

Well I just read the ABC (Australia) news online. It's free and very good. I'd sooner subscribe to a comic book than a newspaper.

Renrew Renrew said:

That rag would have to pay me.

Guest said:

No subscription from me. In this economy? Uh...no. I'll just keep switching around as more and more papers put up a PayWall.

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