Media websites increasingly charging for content

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New York—R.R. Donnelley & Sons Co.'s Press+ released statistics highlighting growth in the efforts of media websites to begin charging for content. “There are now 285 Press+ Affiliates deploying all kinds of digital subscription models. That's a revolutionary change in the last six months, and it's where the action is,” said Steven Brill, co-CEO of Press+, in a statement. Press+ has added 265 of those sites within the past 12 months. Press+ said it has more than 200 companies with pending installations of the paywall platform. Gordon Crovitz, Press+ co-CEO said, on average, users of the Press+ system allow readers 14 free page views per month before they begin charging. The average monthly price for digital-only users is $6.50 per month. For print subscribers, the average monthly price for digital access is $2. “We counsel publishers to start with high meters, ensure that they retain online advertising and online readership then, over time, lower the meters to grow subscriptions more quickly,” Crovitz said in a statement. Crovitz and Brill co-founded Journalism Online and its Press+ system in 2009 along with Leo Hindery. The group sold Journalism Online to Donnelley last year.
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