Porous Paywall Means Big Revenues for New York Times
Yes, the NYT paywall is porous — but that’s a feature, not a bug. It allows anybody, anywhere, to read any NYT article they like. That makes the NYT open and inviting — and means that I continue to be very happy to link to NYT stories.
I’ve been a fan and a proponent of porous paywalls since studying the FT’s model a few years back and was very pleased to see the NY Times go with the FT’s model.
NYT enables visitors to read any story they land on, and even to hack their way around and read all content for free. But elegant navigation between stories requires the customer to pay… and many do.
The genius of the NYTs approach is to enable sharing of any piece of content, while making the full and convenient experience of the product available only to people who pay.
This is similar to freemium games where the game can be played for free, but in a more intense and fun fashion if you buy in game items.