The Times and Sunday Times has revealed that 105,000 people have paid to go behind the paywall since it was put up four months ago. Times Editor James Harding told listeners of the Today programme that paying readers were now engaging with content more deeply than before.
The company later explained that just over 50,000 monthly subscribers have now subscribed to the digital service – the rest had bought a single use pass or had taken out the initial 30 day trail and not renewed. In addition to the digital-only subscribers, a futher 100,000 print subscribers have been accessing the newspapers’ sites.
Rebekah Brooks, chief executive of News International, declared herself pleased with the results.
She said: “We are very pleased to the response to our new digital services. These figures very clearly show that a large number of people are willing to pay for quality journalism in digital formats. It is early days but renewal rates are encouraging and each of our digital subscribers is more engaged and is more valuable to us than very many unique users of the previous model.”
There is an interesting – if slightly hostile – crunch of the numbers over at Beehive City.