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Red Kite Prayer offers 'NPR-style' reader support model

Published November 22, 2016

SANTA ROSA, Calif. (BRAIN) — The Cycling blog RedKitePrayer.com has begun soliciting voluntary reader subscriptions. The site also continues to accept advertising in what publisher Patrick Brady called an "NPR-style" model. 

"We wanted to reassure our readers that our content hasn't been purchased by manufacturers," said Brady. "Moving toward a reader-supported business model puts us more firmly in the company of mainstream media. Increasingly, we're seeing big publishers solicit subscriptions from their readers."

"Unlike big publishers like the New York Times and the Los Angeles Times, we're not going to erect a paywall. All our content remains free. We're doing this NPR-style. If you like what you read, we hope you'll chip in."

He said the drive has already netted enough subscribers to equal the contribution made by a medium-sized advertising run.

He said the site has avoided the trend toward advertorial content.

"Honestly, we want to keep our relationship with both manufacturers and readers straightforward," Brady said. "We've missed out on some revenue by declining to do that content, but we'd rather draw a clear line between what is advertising and what is content; we believe it's better for our readers, better for the manufacturers and ultimately better for us."

Subscriptions range between $3 and $10 per month; automatic billing is available through Paypal. The site will soon begin offering annual memberships, with premiums drawn from the merchandise RKP offers.

Brady launched Red Kite Prayer in 2009.

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