NY Times Preparing Ad-Free Option

The war against ad-blocking software escalates.

The New York Times is sick of ad blocking software, so it’s preparing to launch a premium, ad-free subscription option to readers.

Speaking at the Cannes Lions advertising festival Monday, Times CEO Mark Thompson said Times readers need to understand that “the journalism they enjoy costs real money and needs to be paid for.” Therefore, the company is readying the ad-free option, which would cost more than the standard subscription.

While Thompson didn’t mention how the Times would launch this product and what it would mean for other readers, it stands to reason that the Times would start banning readers who use ad-blockers from viewing content. If that happens, will those readers actually pay more for the Times, or simply move on?

We don’t envy Thompson or anyone else in the media dealing with the ad-blocking dilemma. It’s a tough nut to crack.