Everything You Need to Know About the New York Times Online Paywall

After much, much anticipation among media nerds, the New York Times has finally released the details of its online paywall. Which is coming to take your money very, very soon!

  • It begins on March 28. Get your free reading in now.
  • [Unless you're in Canada, in which case it begins right now, because they're using you Canadians to work out the bugs. Sorry.]
  • Everyone gets to read 20 free articles per month on NYTimes.com. Then the fun starts.
  • "Once readers click on their 21st article, they will have the option of buying one of three digital news packages - $15 for a month of access to the Web site and a mobile phone app; $20 for Web access and an iPad app; and $35 for an all-access plan."
  • Home delivery subscribers get online access for free.
  • Fortunately for cheapskates, there are built-in workarounds! You'll be able to see articles from links to NYTimes.com from Google, Twitter, Facebook, and blogs (huzzah!) even if you've already reached your 20-article limit.
  • Also: "When you visit NYTimes.com by clicking links in Google search results, you'll enjoy up to five free articles per day."
  • A full list of FAQs is here.
For those of you inclined to bitch about paying to read NYT stories online: stop bitching. The fact is the paper needs the money. All papers need the money. In retrospect, it was a strategic mistake for newspapers to put their content online for free. Charging for online access is the way of the future. Get used to it. If you're going to pay to read journalism on the internet, you might as well pay for good journalism.

Gawker.com is still free!

[Photo via alextorrenegra/Flickr]