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Non-subscribers visiting WSJ.com now get a score, based on dozens of signals, that indicates how likely they’ll be to subscribe. The paywall tightens or loosens accordingly: “The content you see is the output of the paywall, rather than an input.”
Across the sites where it’s currently in use, the company’s purchase prediction model has been able to identify groups of readers three to five times more likely than average to buy a subscription, and advertise offers to them differently.
“We wanted to focus on neighborhoods and we wanted to have a membership model. We didn’t get to do it our way at DNA, at least on the business side. So we said, ‘Let’s just do it our way now.'”
“People will always pay for news they can put on the company credit card, but we’ve always believed that that it’s far from the only thing people will pay for.”
“The amount of effort we’d have to invest into doing these things is completely outweighed by effort it would take for us to just do it with Arc.”
“People who have studied the information age at this point recognize that there were a bunch of problems and side effects to the fact that people weren’t asked to pay for content in the early years of the internet.”
In western Massachusetts, the Berkshire Eagle is trying to recover from cost-cutting and rebuild its standing in the community. “We’re trying to do something that’s not been done, which is to bend the circulation curve backwards.”