Digital Subscription Systems in the Face of COVID-19 Crisis: The Case of ‘El Mundo’


  • Enrique Canovaca de la Fuente


The aim of this article is to analyse the impact of COVID-19 on the income models of the Spanish general inter­est press through an in-depth analysis of the case of ‘El Mundo’. This article shows data about the decline in adver­tising, both in printed and digital for­mats, during the first quarter of 2020 and, more specifically, during March. It also reveals that the media platforms with a previously implemented sub­scription system have gained a signif­icant number of new registrations. Not only is ‘El Mundo’ an example of this trend, but also other newspapers such as ‘’, ‘Ara’, ‘La Razón’ or ‘La Voz de Galicia’. The reader becomes an alternative to lessen advertising losses at a time of global transformation of the industry towards reader-revenue models. Long-term consequences of a probable economic recession once the pandemic effects are reduced are also considered in the analysis. The article also outlines some key points to ensure the viability of newspaper publishers, such as investing in journalists with relevant sources or profiles that know how to manage new digital businesses. Keywords: COVID-19, press, business, subscriptions and advertising.

Author Biography

Enrique Canovaca de la Fuente

Rovira i Virgili University (Spain)