Times opens breach in its online paywall: Offers two stories a week and daily email to registered readers

The Times website

The Times has opened up access to its digital content for registered users, allowing a crack of light through its paywall.

Readers can now sign up to unlock two articles of their choice each week, from the Times or Sunday Times, and receive a daily email highlighting the biggest stories of the day.

The free “registered access” scheme started last week, but does not extend to apps. Full access is still only available via a subscription pack costing a minimum of £5 a week.

In November last year, fellow News UK publication The Sun scrapped its paywall to go completely free. But, according to The Times digital director Alan Hunter, this latest concession is as close as his title will get to openly free content.

“We don’t use the F word here,” he told Digiday. “It’s a way of experimenting with the subscription funnel. We’ll continue to do experiments like this for a long time.”

Press Gazette understands the new access point is being used as a means of offering a sample of content in order to entice a user to sign up for a full subscription package.

It comes as newspapers have seen a boost in traffic and sales figures across the board since the EU referendum returned a vote for Brexit.

The Times dropped its paywall briefly on the day of the result, Friday 24 June.

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