Recently, Willliam Lewis, the CEO of Dow Jones & Co., launched a review of the Wall Street Journal’s success.  Dow Jones & Co. is the publisher of the Wall Street Journal and a division of News Corp.

He notes the they have broken the one million mark for digital subscribers, and praises the membership based business model.


The review is intended “to trigger a transformation program designed to modernize the newsroom and raise the standard of… mobile and Professional Information Business products,” according to the article.

The Wall Street Journal was one of the first newspapers to put up a digital paywall—or form of payment for online news. They were able to do this successfully, because of a dedicated readership and niche reporting on the New York Stock Exchange.

Is this business model the right kind for other types of journalism? Will it remain viable only for a niche audience who can afford to have the most impactful news on their profession when they need it?