Kramer: Cost of NY Times paywall likely US$25 million

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Arthur Sulzberger Jr. has said estimates of US$40 million for creating the paywall at the New York Times Co. is “vastly wrong,” but he hasn’t elaborated on just how wrong those calculations are.

paidContent’s Staci Kramer reported Thursday that the actual figure is likely closer to $25 million.

“My understanding is that about a third of the company’s reported $35 million in 2010 capital expenditures went to the metered system. Projected capital expenditures for 2011 range from $45 million to $55 million, according to the 2010 annual report,” she wrote, noting at least half of this money is meant to be allocated to digital, and that those numbers include investments in things like BostonGlobe.com, which is launching a hybrid pay scheme later this year.

Earlier this week at a Columbia University journalism school event, Sulzberger, publisher of The Times and chairman of the Times Co., and Janet Robinson, president and CEO of the company, refused to use the word paywall, instead describing it as an “online pricing plan” or a “digital subscription plan,” the New York Observer reported.

Image: NewsBizBlog

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