#audiences #journalism #latforms
Subscription-based news platforms (such as “Apple News+” or “Readly”) that bundle content from different publishers into one comprehensive package and offer it to media users at a fixed monthly rate are a new way of accessing and consuming digital journalism. These services have received little attention in journalism studies, although they differ greatly from traditional media products and distribution channels. This article empirically investigates the perception of journalism platforms based on eight qualitative focus group discussions with 55 German news consumers. Results show that the central characteristics these platforms should fulfill in order to attract users are strikingly similar to the characteristics of media platforms from the music and video industries, in particular regarding price points, contract features, and modes of usage. Against this background, the potential and perspectives of a subscription-based news platform for journalism’s societal role are discussed.