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New York Times Bleeding Readers Already

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PAYWALL FOLLIES
DailyFeed
The fallout from this paywall experiment has just begun.

Analysts upon analysts have voiced their grim forecast for how this will end and neither option looks very promising -- either with the paywall folding or the paper itself. Countless news organizations have experimented with a paywall -- including the New York Times in 2007 -- and there's yet to be a success story. Even subscription costs far outweigh those of various memberships to Google, MobileMe, Dropbox, SiriusXM, Amazon, Netflix, and the Wall Street Journal.

And we're beginning to witness the very beginning of the downfall.

Hitwise analyzed the traffic to the New York Times website before and after the paywall went up on March 28. Already, it's taken a hit.


Aside from a spike on Saturday -- which Hitwise suspects was due to the potential government shutdown -- there has been a decrease in overall visits between 5% and 15%, or roughly six million visitors per month. Page views also saw a significant decline, falling between 11% and 30%.


So not only are fewer people visiting the New York Times, those who do are reading fewer articles. Yes, it's still early in the experiment, but these numbers don't add up to a paywall success story.

But few people didn't see that coming.

(See also: Must-See Visualization of the New York Times Paywall and New York Times: Doomed Like the Rest)
POSITION:  No positions in stocks mentioned.

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