The idyllic habit of reading a physical newspaper became more than a nostalgic pastime today in Slovenia as many media sites begin charging readers for online access to their content. In order to generate revenue, nearly every major Slovene newspaper has implemented a paywall today where readers (or potential readers at this point, I should say) will be required to pay in order to access and read content on the media websites.
Piano Media, a developer of the common-payment systems that has “changed online media publishing forever” (theirs words), is the architect of the paywall in Slovenia. Previously, Piano Media launched a paywall in Slovakia that, given its success, will be the model for the paywall in Slovenia. “We have been looking for ways to monetize our content,” said Jurij Giacomelli, CEO of Delo, Slovene’s leading newspaper, news-portal and media house. “Piano brings know-how and valuable experience from their Slovak project, and we are looking forward to using that experience as we build our model for digital subscription in Slovenia. We see the unique value of the Piano project as it accelerates the adoption process of paid digital content for the entire market.”
To be clear, not all of a media site’s content will be locked behind the paywall’s coin slot. Publishers will have the liberty to choose what content exists behind the paywall and as well as offer readers ad-free versions of their sites while “others will offer premium access to their content before it is released to the public later in the day.”
Interesting way to prioritize who stays in informed if the news will only come out in a staggered release and go first to those that pay. At any rate, this isn’t exactly an original idea to profit off of media’s original content. Believe it or not, people used to pay other people to come throw newspapers at their house so that those subscribers could find out what was going on in the world. It was a primitive ritual humanity enjoyed for years. In case you forgot, here is some rare archival footage of what the world looked like before we began receiving our news on computers via Internet: