The Meter Cometh

In Britain, both the Telegraph and the Sun have just announced they are moving to a freemium model, like the NYT (and the Dish):

Its publisher, Telegraph Media Group, will allow users free access to 20 online articles a month. After that, readers will be charged £1.99 a month (or £20 a year) for access to further online content and to the Telegraph’s smartphone apps.

Sounds familiar. So does the rationale:

News International’s chief executive Mike Darcey said the free website was threatening the circulation and revenues of the tabloid, and will go behind a paywall in the second half of 2013 in a radical rethink about offering readers content free of charge. “This decision comes from a deep-seated belief that it is just untenable to have 2.4 million paying 40p for the Sun at the same time as a bunch of other people are getting it for free.”

Felix Salmon ponders the trend.