This is an article posted on the Independent’s website yesterday:
The Independent has today launched Independent Minds, a membership scheme designed for those who value free-thinking, independent, high-quality news.
Benefits to members include:
• Additional exclusive articles, from international reportage to long reads, and from in-depth analysis to agenda-setting comment
• An advertising-free website and mobile app
• Free tickets to debates and events where readers can meet The Independent’s renowned journalists
• Free ebooks, with a new title added every month
• An invitation to shape The Independent’s coverage by suggesting subjects to be covered in editorials and in-depth InFact articles explaining big issues
• Exclusive email bulletins and a daily “letter from” column by senior journalists and editors
• Priority comment boards for high-quality debate with our journalists under articles
The cost of the service will be £55 per year or £5.99 per month, with free trials available.
The move comes two and a half years since the newspaper closed its print edition and embarked on a period of rapid digital growth and profitability, enabling substantial investment in its editorial team.
“The expansion of our staff in the UK, US and around the world means we can now offer our most loyal and engaged readers more of what they value most: high-quality, free-thinking journalism,” Christian Broughton, the editor, said.
“This is not simply a case of creating a paywall. Building on the success of recent years, we are now offering additional exclusives and new benefits for those who support us directly through a modest membership fee, inviting readers to shape the The Independent with us, join the debate, come to meet us in person – giving our core readers a real sense of value and membership.
“We will continue to ensure that the majority of our award-winning journalism reaches as many readers as possible around the world for free, supported by advertising. Now more than ever it is important that honest, open, trustworthy journalism is available to all.”
Zach Leonard, ESI MD Digital says: “Independent Minds extends our successful free, advertising-supported model to meet the demand of subscribers willing to pay for exclusive content, closer interaction with our journalists, events, and a live app – at an attractive price point.”
The Independent Daily Edition – a newspaper delivered to your iPad, tablet, mobile or desktop computer by 5am each morning – will continue to be offered to subscribers for £12.99 a month or £149.99 per year, and all subscribers will receive free membership of Independent Minds.