The editor of the New York Times says the paper may go back to the paid subscription model for some of its online content, a format the paper abandoned two years ago.
Executive Editor Bill Keller gave no specifics or timetable, and company officials characterized the internal discussions as general and ongoing. In an online question-and-answer exchange with readers this week, Keller said that although advertising generates the bulk of online revenue, “a lively, deadly serious discussion continues within The Times about ways to get consumers to pay for what we make.” Possibility include charging for full-access subscriptions, developing a micro-payment model in which readers pay a few pennies each time they click on a page and selling news to be distributed on reading devices, as the Times already does with Amazon.com Inc.’s Kindle.
Under the old system, you couldn’t access the NYT archives or read many of their op-ed columns without paying. The Wall Street Journal still works that way.