The business-news site will be scampering into pay territory Aug. 25. It shouldn’t be a big surprise; Finance and Commerce is owned by the same folks who pushed Politics in Minnesota behind the pay wall on Monday.
F&C’s price is higher than PIM’s — $229 a year, though there is a $24-for-30-days trial offer. That fee does include five-day-a-week delivery of the paper version.
Unlike PIM, which is a relative upstart and mostly digital for some time, F&C has been around since 1887 as a print repository for public notices. The paper employs journalists as a condition of Minnesota Statute 331A.02: If you want public notice cash and publish more than once a week, 25 percent of your news columns must be “devoted to news of local interest to the community which it purports to serve.”
The title’s owner, Dolan Media, has made it clear it wants all its news sites (which includes Minnesota Lawyer) behind pay walls, believing users must pay the cost of providing content — or in the case of legal notices, for database access.
F&C appears to be the final local piece of that strategy. Dolan’s sites don’t get big traffic, so I’m guessing any advertising falloff is minimal. The F&C site itself looks like it got a design upgrade in anticipation of the move.