Media

Trying to make paywalls work, Andrew Sullivan offers Dish access for $2 a month

Blogger Andrew Sullivan has changed the pricing model for his popular blog The Dish, now offering access for $2 a month rather than only a $20-a-year option.

Sullivan moved from The Daily Beast to his own independent operation in January, and he raised more than $333,000 for the new ad-free site in just 24 hours at that time. But reader funding slowed down shortly after that and now that blog has raised $653,000 toward a goal of $900,000 by next January. Sullivan recently said new sales had essentially “flat-lined,” so the blog changed its paywall to let people read just five free stories every 60 days.

However, many readers of The Dish have been asking for Sullivan to modify his paywall to add a monthly option. Some readers may not have been willing to sign up for a $20 a year subscription but could be willing to buy into a $2 a month fee.

Sullivan writes in a blog post today:

Well, you asked for it. In fact so many asked for it, so quickly, we feel bad it took us this long to get there. But today, we can announce a new way to subscribe to the Dish, which will, we hope, accommodate those of you (a considerable number) who are going through tough economic times and could use a lower barrier to entry and the option of canceling in the future if your budget tightens again.

That’s a super-generous offer. $1.99-a-month seems a more reasonable sum – an app-like fee that simply gives you more options for payment. Like the $19.99-a-year option, we’re also leaving it up to you if you’d like to pay more – even if that’s only $2 or as much as $5. The point of course is to make this available to as many people at as many price points as you want and need, above a minimum baseline.

Andrew Sullivan photo via Flickr

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