Newsquest launches metered paywall on some of its news sites.

From The Press Gazette ????

Newsquest has introduced a digital subscription model across all of its daily newspaper websites, putting up a paywall to readers, but will keep all coronavirus and breaking news stories free to read.

After seeing “encouraging results” with metered paywalls on a small number of sites, including the Northern Echo and Herald, in recent years, the regional publisher has rolled the model out to a further 20 titles.

They encompass all of its daily regionals, such as the Brighton Argus and Oxford Mail, as well as weeklies including the Hereford Times, News Shopper, Watford Observer, Warrington Guardian and Bucks Free Press.

Readers will be given the option to pay £4.99 per month or £52 per year for unlimited access to articles, with up to 80 per cent less adverts and the ability to leave comments and sign up to email newsletters.

They are also told the subscription will “help fund the vital, trusted local coverage that we provide and our communities need”.

Newsquest editorial development director Toby Granville said: “We continue to believe that the online local news model will be predominantly a free to access one for the foreseeable future.

“However, we have been running digital subscriptions across a number of our sites for some time with encouraging results, and we will now be extending this approach to 20 more large sites.”

Granville added that non-subscribers will be asked to register with their email address after reading 20 articles per month, and to subscribe after reaching 40 articles.