You will have access to 20 articles per month without paying anything. All of you regulars should know that visiting the blogfront won’t count as one of those articles. Clicking on one of the posts, however, will count as one of them. All of you regular commenters should also know that no matter how many times you comment on any given post, it will still only cost you one of those 20. If you move on to another post, however, that will cost you a second article.
Once you hit your maximum of 20 articles, it will cost you $9.99 for full access for the rest of the month. (Students, teachers, school administrators, military personnel and government employees who sign on from schools or workplaces will have free unlimited access.) Or you can just pay that up front, and you’ll be able to rest easy, knowing you’ll have unlimited access not just to the blog but to all of the other great journalism and commentary on the Post’s Web site.
There are ways to get around the paywall. As the Post put it in its announcement of the news: “visitors who come to The Post through search engines or shared links will still be able to access the linked page regardless of the number of articles they have previously viewed.” That includes via Twitter.
But I really hope you all will subscribe. As I have repeatedly said in the past, this blog would not be what it is without your contributions. At risk of tooting the old horn, I’ve worked very hard to create a place where commenters can engage in a daily debate that (I hope) is far more substantive and interesting than what you find in many other comments sections. In my view, whatever success this blog has enjoyed is absolutely dependent on the success of that particular aspect of its mission. I’ve tried very hard to encourage those of you who share the goal of creating a high-quality debating space on the web (and are helping make it a reality daily) to stick around and make you comfortable, and to be responsive to your concerns.
And it has paid off. Part of what makes this blog worth all the hard work is what all of you have made of it. I like to think that together, we have created something that’s worth perpetuating. This goes for you profoundly valued old timers — who have been helping make this blog what it is for literally years (!) now — as well as for the excellent new arrivals who keep showing up to keep us all thinking quick.
Believe me, I’m not comfortable asking you all to subscribe. But here we are, and I hope you’ll agree that what we’ve built here (no, I didn’t build this — not alone, anyway) is worth it.