Paywalls result from the need of news organizations to generate revenue streams from audience subscriptions. Since the arrival of digital media, news organizations have faced an accelerated loss in advertising sales while Internet aggregators such as Google and Facebook have taken up an increasing share of advertising revenues (combined an estimated 80% share of digital advertising). Therefore, paywalls and strategies for getting people to pay for news subscriptions have become increasingly paramount for news organizations. This entry examines how paywalls work, the importance of studying paywalls and their impacts, and some notable successes and failures of paywalls.

The Operation of Paywalls

Setting up a paywall means that news organizations build a digital payment system that requires their audience to pay for subscriptions in order to access the ...

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