Are Paywalls The Future For Online Publishing?

While the Internet thrives on the freedom of information, more and more companies are choosing to cover their expenses with Paywalls. The most successful paywall to date is the NY Times with over 450,000 paid subscribers. But can paywalls work for all publishers? Or only the very biggest? And even if they work, are paywalls a form of class warfare that favor the rich over the poor?

Here’s an interesting graphic from BestCollegesOnline.org (via Mashable) that takes a look at the business of paywalls for online publishing.

Paywall Trends
Source: Paywall Trends

What do you think? Are paywalls the future? Do they create an unhealthy culture of class-based information access? If paywalls aren’t the answer, then how are top-tier journalists to be properly compensated? Without paywalls to fund proper, quality journalism, will news necessarily devolve into pure sensationalism?

These are all interesting questions and we’d love to get your thoughts in the comments section.

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