Back in 2003, it created a premium programme tied to the 2004 presidential election. Also at that time, ABCNews, along with CNN, put video behind a subscription wall, both as a standalone and as part of short-lived services RealNetworks SuperPass and Yahoo Platinum.
But a lack of traction among viewers forestalled those efforts and they were quickly abandoned. In the interim, rising online ad dollars in the second half of the decade made talk of paywalls and subscriptions at the network seem more academic than anything else.
That changed with the collapse in online ad growth.
Plus, ABC news is currently looking at buyouts aplenty and “huge cuts,” which lends the operation a sense of urgency this time around.