Istmo Paywall (Round 5)

Italy Project type: prototype Valerio Bassan


Istmo is an incentive-driven paywall system that rewards users' loyalty and their interaction with content. The project's goal is to build an easy to implement monetisation tool for independent digital magazines and smaller online news outlets, helping to foster a new kind of attention economy. 

The solution

There is a paradox with how paywalls currently work: the more a user interacts with a website, the more likely they are to pay for the content they love. On the contrary, less engaged readers remain in a ""fee free"" area, bringing low added value to the publishers' revenue model. While this model can work well for bigger media outlets with high levels of traffic, it doesn't support smaller digital outlets. Istmo Paywall is a tool that tracks how subscribers interact with a website and calculates their ""fidelity score"" in a transparent way. The higher the score at the end of a billing cycle, the lower the fee will be for the user - thus rewarding them for their loyalty. "