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C-I now offers free online access to print subscribers

Posted: October 30, 2012 5:35 p.m.
Updated: October 31, 2012 5:00 a.m.
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Current print subscribers looking to gain free access to the C-I website’s news content can click on “Register” at the top right of any page to get their new benefit. New subscribers should click on the nearby “Subscriber” link.

Print subscribers -- current or new -- to the Chronicle-Independent can now receive free Web access to all the C-I’s online news content. Previously, access to news content on the C-I’s website, www.chronicle-independent.com, was behind a paywall and only available by paying for an online subscription.

“Since its launch in October 2010, our website has become Kershaw County’s local online news source much in the fashion that the Chronicle-Independent has been Kershaw County’s local news print source ever since its founding in 1889,” Publisher Mike Mischner said. “We’re not raising our print subscription prices, but rather adding this free online access as an added benefit and thank you gift to our valued newspaper readers.

“Providing this service, we believe, will better fulfill our role of being the local source of news, in all ways that news is accessed, in a digital age.”

Current print subscribers must register to gain full access to the website. Go to the C-I’s registration page by clicking on “Register” (between the “Log in” and “Subscribe” links) at the top right of the website, or go directly to www.chronicle-independent.com/accounts/register/. Fill in the information on the resulting page, including email address, click the box that says “I’m a subscriber,” and access will be granted within 24 hours.

New print subscribers can gain access to the website’s news content in one of two ways. To start a new subscription through our website, click on the “Subscribe” link at the top right of the page, or go directly to www.chronicle-independent.com/billing/form/. On the resulting page, choose from one of the subscription packages offered, and fill out the account and payment information. Those paying for their subscriptions online through PayPal will automatically gain access to the website’s news content after receiving an email confirmation.

For those new subscribers who prefer not to go through the website’s subscription page, they may call the C-I’s circulation manager at (803) 432-6157, email her at dalbertson@chronicle-independent.com or walk in to the C-I’s offices.

Print/online combo subscribers will now enjoy a 25 percent savings off of the C-I’s previous subscription prices.

Previously, readers with an annual print subscription of $77 had to pay an additional $26 to receive online access. Now, annual subscribers can pay a flat rate of $77 to have the C-I delivered to their home and have complete access to its website, www.chronicle-independent.com.

Online only subscriptions remain the same price as print/online packages. The full list of subscription packages includes:

• 3 months online only - $21.25

• 3 months online and print - $21.25

• 6 months online only - $39.50

• 6 months online and print - $39.50

• 1 year online only - $77

• 1 year online and print - $77

The C-I also offers 3-day online only passes for $3.

Mischner noted that non-print, online only subscribers will still have to pay for their online subscription at the full $77 price.

“So, the best deal is the print/online combination, which provides free online subscription access,” Mischner said.

There continue to be benefits from receiving the print edition of the C-I. Church news, legal advertisements and the cooking page are not reproduced online. Also, while there is an online calendar of events, it does not reflect the same calendar as in the printed newspaper. In addition, the bulk of the C-I’s advertising remains in print, including its weekly display advertising specials as well as advertising circulars.

Editor Martin L. Cahn noted there will be a number of benefits to print subscribers accessing the C-I’s online content.

“One of the things I’ve wanted to see happen with our website is reader interaction. Commenting on stories is one way to make that happen, but print subscribers who didn’t have online access to the full stories couldn’t comment,” Cahn said. “By opening up the website in this way, more people will be able to leave comments, thereby interacting with us and each other. Opening up the website to all print subscribers will also enhance the connection between Facebook and the C-I’s website. Subscribers who ‘Like’ the C-I’s Facebook page will now be able to click on links we provide to stories and go straight to them, rather than running into our paywall.”

Along with the Chronicle-Independent, Camden Media Co. publishes the West Wateree Chronicle; (Blythewood) Country Chronicle; Lee County (Bishopville) Observer; Fort Jackson Leader; The Shaw News; The Connection, for the Kershaw County Chamber of Commerce; Lake Wateree News, for the Lake Wateree Association; and The Camden Horse, Kershaw County’s local horse magazine.

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