(Reuters) - Facebook Inc (FB.O) is in early talks with several news publishers about how its social media site can better support subscription business models, the company’s head of news partnerships, Campbell Brown, said in a statement on Wednesday.
The statement comes a day after TheStreet reported that Facebook plans to launch a subscription-based news product, citing comments by Brown at a conference. Facebook will begin initial tests in October, TheStreet reported.
The feature is likely to allow publishers to create a paywall on Facebook’s Instant Articles and guide readers to a publisher’s home page to opt for a digital subscription, according to TheStreet.
Instant Articles lets publishers post articles directly to the Facebook app.
The idea for a paywall is based on premium and metered plans and has been in the works for a while, TheStreet said, citing Brown at the Digital Publishing Innovation Summit in New York.
Facebook also started the roll-out of a new tool that allows publishers using Instant Articles to measure how those articles perform compared with their own mobile websites.
Shares of Facebook closed up 0.79 percent at $164.14 on Wednesday.
Reporting by Anya George Tharakan in Bengaluru and Sheila Dang in New York; Editing by Shounak Dasgupta and Leslie Adler