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AP Photo/Mark Lennihan

Since the election, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times, Tronc, The Boston Globe, The Washington Post, and Gannett have all reported jumps in subscriptions. Now a new study from the AP NORC Center and American Press Institute finds that a majority of Americans (53%) pay for news, and of those, a majority (54%) subscribe to newspapers in print or online.

Why it matters: A surge in subscription numbers across all types of newspapers, combined with the recent AP/API report, dispel the notions that people are unwilling to pay for news and that people are abandoning newspaper coverage. The report also found a clear association also between trust of news sources and paying for news.

The downside: Subscription revenue is still a long way from replacing plunging ad revenue.

Key takeaways:

  • Uptick in subscriptions is bipartisan: A surge in subscriptions from both newspapers that lean left editorially (NYT) and right (WSJ) show that the desire to pay for reliable coverage exists regardless of party affiliation.
  • If newspapers want to charge more, now is the time to do it: According to the AP/API study, those who currently pay for a subscription tend to think it is relatively inexpensive. Only 10% of people think their subscription costs too much for what they get.
  • A willingness to pay for news exists at all age ranges: A breakdown of subscribers by age shows that people of all ages are willing to pay for news, but not surprisingly, digital subscription purchases sway much younger.
Expand chart
Data: The Media Insight Project, survey conducted Feb. 16-March 20, 2017; Chart: Andrew Witherspoon / Axios

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DOJ watchdog to probe whether officials sought to alter election results

Donald and Melania Trump exit Air Force One in West Palm Beach, Fla., on Jan. 20. Photo: Alex Edelman/AFP via Getty Images

The Justice Department's inspector general will investigate whether any current or former DOJ officials "engaged in an improper attempt to have DOJ seek to alter the outcome" of the 2020 election, the agency announced Monday.

Driving the news: The investigation comes in the wake of a New York Times report that alleged Jeffrey Clark, the head of DOJ's civil division, had plotted with President Trump to oust acting Attorney General Jeffery Rosen in a scheme to overturn the election results in Georgia.

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