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Can Bitcoin provide solutions to online publishing

The publishing industry has been trying to break through the wall of profit for content online as it is more cost efficient to produce online than the pay cost of printing. So far the process of receiving paid subscriptions and advertising money has not reached a profitable formula solution. Bitcoin may be the answer offers Nick Chowdry of the UK on Coin Desk today.

Chicago Sun-Times, Newspaper Guild, Reach Tentative Agreement
Chicago Sun-Times, Newspaper Guild, Reach Tentative Agreement
Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images

The online publishing world takes away the cost of print but the subscription fees are still an issue. Some like the New York Times makes $150 million a year in advertising but others have not reached a workable formula. Once reason is that the paywall requires a subscription with credit card. Most need to charge at least $14.99 due to merchant fees that are up 2-3 percent of the subscription cost.

There are a couple of obstacles to overcome. Some do not want to pay the subscription fee as the whole package of content is not desired. Some news online media provide availability of access to a few articles or options of limited access to articles. Certain online media providers such as Nature Journal will ask a payment for a complete pdf download of the whole article after the introductory summary.

Section of content to be purchased and viewed is becoming popular and known as the paywall when a subscriber’s money payment has payment options. It is known as hard and soft paywall depending upon how much content you want to read and make a purchase of access to content.

Some potential subscribers balk at the personal information to submit with the card number in order to gain access. Reduction of online exposure is becoming a serious concern to the online user and the online media publication or blog site.

Bitcoin has the ability to assist in maintaining privacy and a cost efficient solution for online media providers to accept forms of fees for subscription or content access. Success with use of BitWall has been successfully done in a trial by the Chicago Sun-Times. Bit Wall provides the site user an easy way to implement a bitcoin paywall payment. Bitcoin is seconds of implementation time to transact a payment and go anywhere in the world with a click on the computer. The Chicago Sun-Times partners with Coinbase to accept bitcoin payments due to the success of the payment trial.

It is the number of clicks on an article that brings in the ad money. The more clicks can reduce the amount of small banner and other intrusive ads on an online media site. The answer still lies in quality and engaging content but also a cost efficient method to pay for the media access. Providing anonymity is a big plus to gain the nearly 25 percent that shy away from online purchases according to the Harris Poll study in late March.

Hopefully, the vision into the future of Bitcoin can be the answer to the monetization of the journalism world. The Sun-Times entry into Bitcoin acceptance is a hopeful sign for online publishers and Bitcoin that this interest in payment systems has potential.