11 Nov Smart Paywalls for WordPress
We are thrilled to release the first version of MedioPay for WordPress. It helps to solve one of the most pressing problems for 21th century journalism: How can the work of journalists become a sellable good again – and how can this good be sold in a way which is adequate for the Internet?
In 2019, nearly all newspapers agree that readers must pay for content. You can create advertising sheets without payments, but you can’t create good journalism.
The world needs good journalism more than ever. The content flood of the Internet did not make journalism uneccessary – it made it more important than ever. When there is an army of people writing texts to spread opinions, to advertise goods or to promote a company, we terribly need professional writers: Authors which are educated in journalistic ethics and best practice for fact validation, authors which are brave enough to visit dangerous places, confront the powerful with inconvenient questions and tell stories which hurt. Without journalism, there is no resitance to misinformation left.
Publishers realized this. There is hardly any newspaper which doesn’t put content behind paywalls. But on nearly all sites readers need to subscribe and pay a monthly fee between 10 and 50 Dollar. This might serve as a bandaid, monetizing the low hanging fruits of loyal readers. But it creates a tragedy of the commons. There are hundreds of newspapers in Germany alone. Nobody will subcribe to all of them, a few might subcribe to three or four. The result? Most articles of newspapers will be permanently hidden from the vast majority of readers, which will turn to alternative, non-journalistic sources of news. What seems to be a rational decision for individual newspapers significantly reduce the whole market. It doesn’t help to solve the misinformation problem but makes it worse.
Can it be done in another way? Yes:
We strongly believe that journalism must allow readers to pay for single articles to survive the 21th century. In our vision the internet will be a giant kiosk where readers can directly pay for any information. Newspapers will learn how to use cliffhangers to make people pay. Clickbaits will be a thing of the past, quality content will strive, which readers not just click, but pay for. Newspapers will be able to determine how much value an article has, and they will share revenue with authors and photographers.
The largest pain of selling single articles is payment. Cost of payment quickly exceeds income. With Bitcoin SV and MoneyButton this problem is solved. Both provide an easy to use massively scaling infrastructure, on which MedioPay built the Smart PayWall Plugin for WordPress. Building on a strong infrastructure has tremendous advantages: We don’t need to invest time and resources in infrastructure building, but can focus solely on the application side – and create the best and most sophisticated content monetarization apps.
Our plugin enables paywalls and tipping buttons. But our vision does not stop here. We want to embed every user interaction on media sites in streams of micropayments. For example comments: Many newspapers and blogs suffer from troll attacks. Why not let them pay?
Or: Blockchain payments allow to compose complicated payments streams, so that, for example, the first buyers of an article gets a share of future payments. Or that readers can share affiliate links to get a part of payments. This will not just create new revenue streams, but also increase the visibility of articles and incentivice influencers to share journalistic content. We can also add metadata on payments, so that a tip is also a sharing of an article. MedioPay can integrate P2P blockchain advertisement, like TonicPoW, and combine it with smart contracts. For example, someone buys the ownership of an article and gets advertising and paywall revenue. This can completely transform the way people invest in media. Newspapers can also automatically sell the rights to republish or translate articles.
Our first product is the MedioPay Smart Paywall plugin for wordpress. It provides a uniquely rich set of functions:
- create one or two paywalls in an article, either with a shortcode or a second editor field
- add tiping buttons to a post
- give early buyers a share of future revenue
- allow buyers to share an affiliate link to get a part of revenues
- put metadata in the transactions so they share the post on the blockchain. As a prototype we built a Value List of blogposts.
MedioPay allows you to start embedding your blog posts in streams of micro transactions. To help your readers cross the paywall for the first time, we created a faucet – a site, where you can get 50 cent in BSV, which might be enough to pay for one or two articles. It’s really easy: Get a moneybutton account, go to this site, click a button, get 50 Cent.
Now you can pay for the paywall, like the one here. Behind it you find more detailed instructions how to use MedioPay. By the way, we set the income sharing to a maxmimum. So if you get your affiliate link after paying, you will receive 40 percent of what people pay.
Pay what you want for 6386 characters behind the wall.
2.45 of 100.00 EUR reached to shut down the paywall for all. Pay 97.55 EUR to become the sponsor of this post.
Don't know how to pay? Learn and get free BSV!