Doc Pop News Drop: Automattic Acquires The Atavist

Doc’s WordPress News Drop is a weekly report on the most pressing WordPress news. When the news drops, I will pick it up and deliver it right to you.

Are subscription based services the future for online publications? Automattic seems to think so, in fact they recently acquired Atavist, makers of a subscription based CMS software. In this week’s News Drop video we talk about that acquisition and what it means for The Atavist Magazine. We also talk about some WordPress plugin alternatives that offer membership levels.

Love WordPress News but hate reading? My name is Doc and this is Doc Pop’s News Drop!
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In area of competing with Facebook and a decline in online advertising, publishers are looking for alternative ways of funding their work. Many, like myself, have tried using subscription based platforms like Patreon to directly ask our audience to help fund our work. It’s not a perfect system, but it seems to be one of the ways publishers can stay relevant.

So it’s no surprise that Automattic, the owners of are looking into subscription services too. In fact, Automattic recently acquired Atavist, who make a subscription based software for blogs, including their own site The Atavist Magazine, which publishes fantastic long form stories that readers have access to for $25 a year.
It’s unclear what exactly Automattic will do with this technology, but I assume users will soon have the ability to easily offer subscriptions to their sites. While all of the staff will now be Automattic employees, it does sound like the Atavist Magazine will continue to operate a standalone magazine, which is great news.

If you are running a self hosted WordPress site but want to start offering subscription based articles, there are several membership plugins such as Restrict Content Pro out there already. I personally use Patreon to help fund my yo-yo videos on Youtube, but they also offer a well maintaned WordPress plugin which can be used to restrict access to articles and pages on your site to specific levels of monthly sponsors.

Are subscription based sites the future of online publishing? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.

Thats it for this weeks news drop, be sure to check out our site, for daily articles on WordPress and open source web development. No subscription required!

Thanks for watching, we’ll see you next week.

Doctor Popular is an artist and musician living in San Francisco. As a full disclaimer, he is neither a doctor nor popular.

The post Doc Pop News Drop: Automattic Acquires The Atavist appeared first on Torque.

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