2011-02-03

Readability: a service for decluttering web pages and donating

After Flattr, Readability is another option for donating to publishers of free web content [source]. But it has features beyond that that make it interesting to readers. Its tag line is “Enjoy reading. Support writing.”
Readability for readers:
  • In order to get an account, you need to pay a monthly fee (whose size you can choose, the default is $5).
    • 70% of all membership fees go directly to the publishers and content creators in your reading list.
    • 30% of all membership fees go to improving Readability’s growing set of tools and services for readers.
  • Afterwards, a bookmarklet allows you to make any web page more readable by removing ads, navigation elements, etc.
  • You can also push URLs to your account on the Readability website and access them from there later on.
  • There will be an Readability iOS app for offline reading, a modified version of Instapaper.
  • Safari Reader is based on older Readability code.
  • Instapaper users can link their account with their Readability account so that their Instapaper activity decides how their donation will be distributed.
Readability for publishers:
  • You need to register with Readability in order to get paid, but Readability keeps a backlog of articles, so if users have read your content in the past, you retroactively get money.
  • Readability provides you with statistics regarding your content (how many people access it, when, etc.).
  • You can install buttons to “Read now” and “Read later” on your website, for each content unit.
  • Safari Reader is a great way to test how your content will probably look on Readability.
Observations:
  • This solves an important problem for readers of free web content: Publishers currently have no incentive to display all of their content on a single page, because it decreases ad revenue. With Readability, the equation changes.
  • As a benefit to Readability, if publishers receive donations through them, they are also likely to promote them (via buttons etc.).
Related posts:
Flattr

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