Martin Nisenholtz, senior vice president of digital operations at the New York Times Co., recently referred to the paper of record's upcoming metered model on Bloomberg as a "softer approach." Said Nisenholtz:
"We haven't tried it before. The metered model is a new approach... The FT actually has that approach ...it's a certain number of free articles then after that it tips into a paywall and the reason you want to do this is that is to keep your big base -- you want to keep that big audience of people coming in from Twitter and elsewhere. And you're monetizing the people who are drinking very deeply, using a lot of the content."
Nisenholtz is bullish about social media and in particular Twitter in adding to the Gray Lady's user base. "I think the thing that surprises me most is the power of social media in spreading the news," said Nisenholtz. "It's just been an enormous turbo charger on Times content: Tweeted, blogged, Facebooked -- whatever. Huge. it's just added millions of new users to the franchise." The New York Times, according to Journalistics, is the top newspaper on Twitter (Anil Dash, rather convincingly, disagrees).