May 8, 2018

Publishers are using paywalls to survive

Photo: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Bloomberg, Vanity Fair, Wired, Business Insider and The Atlantic have launched new paywalls within the past year — and legacy institutions like The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post and The Boston Globe have all tightened their paywalls over the past few years.

Why it matters: There are many factors contributing to a rise in paywalled news, like tech's ad dominance, and a piqued interest in all things Trump. But on-demand access to information and entertainment has also become a consumer trend that is likely helping news outlets get consumers cash in.

What's next? There's an ongoing debate about whether one day news organizations would bundle their subscription services with other popular on-demand media subscriptions, like Spotify, which once came with a NYT All Access subscription.

  • Food for thought: Via @alexweprin: "As an aside, I think this becomes even more likely if/when Apple launches their Apple Music/Apple TV shows/Apple News bundle."
"No one except the Wall Street Journal, The New York Times and now probably the Washington Post has come up with a digital product that really in any significant way will replace the revenue that is being lost as print newspapers lose both circulation and advertising ... It is very difficult to see — with a lack of success in terms of important dollars rising from digital — it’s difficult to see how the print product survives over time.”
Warren Buffett at Berkshire Hathaway's annual meeting

Gut check: Local media executives have been saying for months that their biggest competition for subscriptions and eyeballs is large national newspapers.

Some perspective: Berkshire Hathaway owns more than 30 newspapers, including Buffett's hometown paper, the Omaha World-Herald. One of Buffett's earliest jobs was delivering newspapers door-to-door, which is why he hosts an annual newspaper-throwing contest.

Go deeper

Trump threatens to "assume control" of Minneapolis over unrest

Flames from a nearby fire illuminate protesters standing on a barricade in front of the Third Police Precinct in Minneapolis on Thursday. Photo: Kerem Yucel/AFP via Getty Images

President Trump threatened via Twitter early Friday to send the national guard to Minneapolis following three days of massive demonstrations and unrest in the city over George Floyd, a black man who died in police custody this week.

Details: "I can’t stand back & watch this happen to a great American City, Minneapolis. A total lack of leadership. Either the very weak Radical Left Mayor, Jacob Frey, get his act together and bring the City under control, or I will send in the National Guard & get the job done right," Trump tweeted after a police station was torched by some protesters.

Updated 1 hour ago - Politics & Policy

In photos: Protests over George Floyd's death grip Minneapolis

Protesters cheer as the Third Police Precinct burns behind them on in Minneapolis on Thursday night. Photo: Stephen Maturen/Getty Images

Cheering protesters set a Minneapolis police station on fire Thursday night in the third night of unrest following the death of George Floyd, a black man who died in police custody in the city, per AP.

The state of play: Minnesota's governor on Thursday activated the state's national guard following violent outbreaks throughout the week, as the nation waits to see if the officers involved will be charged with murder.

Updated 6 hours ago - Health

World coronavirus updates

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins; Map: Axios Visuals

New Zealand has a single novel coronavirus case after reporting a week of no new infections, the Ministry of Health confirmed on Friday local time.

By the numbers: Nearly 6 million people have tested positive for COVID-19 and over 2.3 million have recovered from the virus. Over 357,000 people have died globally. The U.S. has reported the most cases in the world with over 1.6 million.