The Sun Introduces Online Paywalls, Restricting Customer Engagement

In Customer Engagement, Customer Experience, Featured on App, Social media by Vaughn Highfield3 Comments

The Sun Newspaper

The Sun has begun placing itself behind a paywall, thus restricting access to their content to only those who pay for the privilege or have a subscription to the print edition of the newspaper.

The latest culprit is Rupert Murdoch's redtop newspaper The Sun, which follows in the footsteps of the Telegraph who announced yesterday that they would be charging readers for access.

Some newspapers, such as The Times – which is also owned by Rupert Murdoch's news empire, News Corp. International – have had such a system running for three years now as part of their Times+ subscriber package. But news that the UKs most popular paper is jumping behind a paywall due to being "untenable", is a very worrying idea.

Speaking to the Guardian, The Sun's CE Mike Darcey said that the decision to move behind a paywall comes from "a deep-seated belief that it is just untenable to have 2.4 million people paying 40p for the Sun at the same time as a bunch of other people are getting it for free.”

"The Sun website is a fantastic website and sometimes it is a better product. I have to believe that we are all suffering, to a greater or lesser degree in the print world because of that, that part of those people are saying day in, day out ‘why am I paying for the Sun when I can get it for free’,”

By placing themselves behind a paywall, is The Sun damaging the way it engages with customers? Surely a part of the reason why many went online to read the Sun was because it was free. Now it's behind a paywall won't many flock to the various other free news outlets available online?

It all depends on the cost of the privilege and how easy they make it to pay. Currently the model will offer 20 free articles a month, with the rest needing to be paid for to see. It's unlikely a subscription will cost a similar amount to that of the print version.

Perhaps moving to a different method of monetisation would have benefited the paper?

Maybe changing how they gained revenue from the print edition – thus allowing them to keep the online version free – could be the solution that kept readers on side?

Let us know your thoughts by commenting below.

 

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Comments

  1. Karen

    DON’T pay for mainstream media !!!
    Get all your news on the internet from people who dont have any hidden agendas except for telling the truth … and … it’s FREE !!!
    Why would you pay for manipulated BS ????

  2. Rupert Bloggs

    What an absolutely pathetic article.

    It is a simply stunning display of ignorance of the realities of business to describe the Sun newspaper as a “culprit” when all the owners are trying to do is get paid for their content. To say that it is “worrying” that their business is “untenable” because they won’t keep giving you something for nothing is also bizarre.

    Why don’t you set us all an example and work for nothing too, Vaughn?

    1. Author
      Vaughn

      After having worked for 3 years in writing, largely unpaid because the amount of writers around is so large that their worth is miniscule until you get yourself far enough up the ladder, I can safely say I have worked for free – I also still contribute to many places for free too.

      I’m sorry you feel that way about the news piece, but it is true that putting content behind an online paywall is a poor way to do business in that sector.

      Information is free online everywhere now, to survive you have to adapt and come up with a profitable strategy. Placing your content behind a paywall isn’t the way as people will instead find free alternatives.

      Could you confidently say that you would pay to read news on a website when you can head to BBC News or various other news outlets and read the same content for free?

      Probably not.

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