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OPA to Size up Market for Paid Content

By @NY Staff

The Online Publishers Association is launching a study to size up the market for paid online content.

The industry trade organization said the research results would segment the market by categories of content as well as by payment models. It expects to release the results by summer of 2002.

The study announcement comes as more and more free, ad-supported content providers try to convert to a paid model or a mix of free and paid services, including OPA members such as Salon.com.

Michael Zimbalist, executive director of the Online Publishers Association, said sizing the market is an important first step toward understanding how premium paid content offerings are gaining acceptance with consumers and helping online publishers diversify their revenue sources.

The association, which counts CBS MarketWatch.com, ESPN.com, New York Times Digital and USAToday.com among as members, said the study intends to bring perspective and analysis to the role that paid content and premium services play in the business of online publishing.