London Paper Is Murdoch's Paywall Test Ground

By Jason Farago,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 7, 2009 5:37 AM CDT
The Sunday Times, owned by News Corp, will launch a fee-based standalone website in November.   (©HowardLake)
camera-icon View 1 more image

(Newser) – Rupert Murdoch will test out his new pay-to-read Internet model this November, when News Corp launches a stand-alone website for Britain's Sunday Times. According to the Guardian, the site will feature "communities editors" and its own team of journalists. It's unclear whether users will pay a subscription or a per-visit fee.

The Sunday Times is Britain's top weekend broadsheet and has subsidized the loss-making daily Times for years, but recently the paper has gone into the red. One former Sunday Times editor suggested that Murdoch was making such a public intervention in order to encourage his competitors to join in: "He knows that this will work better if all the main competitors do it."