You are now reading us in multiple ways in print and on CharlotteObserver.com, tablets and mobile phones. Today were changing our subscription packages to Charlotte Observer Plus to reflect that evolution in reader habits.
Now, when you visit CharlotteObserver.com, you will have a limited number of page views that are still free, but youll need a subscription to read more deeply into our site.
All home delivery subscribers to our print edition will have full access beginning today, and with your next renewal of your print subscription, you will be charged slightly more. If you dont subscribe to the Observers print editions, youll need to buy a digital subscription for unlimited access to CharlotteObserver.com.
The Observer Plus package includes CharlotteObserver.com, our mobile apps, including one focused just on the Carolina Panthers, the e-edition of our newspaper and much more.
I encourage you to try our e-edition. Its an exact digital replica of the printed newspaper, allowing you to easily read the paper when youre away from home or if you want to check an edition from a three-year archive. Readers have told us its useful, easy to navigate and convenient.
Since I first wrote about Observer Plus last month, Ive heard from many of you about the change. Some have said: What took you guys so long? Everybody knows the world is becoming digital. Others have been, well, lets just say, unhappy that much of our online content wont be free anymore.
Many of your questions have been about how the new subscriptions work. Here are answers to the most common questions youve asked.
Thank you for your support of the Observer.
Q: Im a print subscriber, so how does this affect me?
If you already subscribe to the paper, you will receive full access to all the Observer digital platforms at no additional cost until your current subscription expires, and you get a bill or a credit card charge. When its time to renew, well include a small new fee in your renewal subscription to include continuing full digital access.
Q: As a print subscriber, what will be different when I come to the website?
Youll need to create an account, which will be linked to your delivery address. You can do that by clicking on the link now on top of the site, or waiting until you get a pop-up box telling you to sign in as you read stories. Once you create your account, your email address and password become your log-in to the site from any device.
Q: I buy a single copy from a news rack. Does that include digital access?
No, our single-copy customers will need to purchase a digital-only subscription on our site if they would like to use us online. It costs $99.95 annually, or $9.95 a month after an introductory month at 99 cents. Or youll find the best value may be to begin home delivery, including digital access.
Q: My family has a print subscription, but multiple family members read online. How will that work?
Everyone in a household will use the same password to your account.
Q: What does digital access include?
Youll have access to all websites, stories, columns, popular blogs, databases and photos that the Observer posts. You also get the e-edition of the paper, which is a digital replica of all the pages in the Observer. One note: The new digital access bundle does not include Kindle, Nook or Sony Reader. I wish it did, but they are sold through other companies, and we dont control the pricing.
Q: How much will this cost print subscribers?
The new subscription increases your price by 67 cents a week if you subscribe daily or on weekends; 45 cents a week if you subscribe Sunday only. Again, it does not take effect until your next renewal. Until then, you have free access.
Q: Who do I contact if I have questions?
Current subscribers should call our customer service number at 1-800-532-5350 or send an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org with your name, address and phone number.
Q: What if I have trouble logging in to the new account or need to have my password reset?
For assistance with digital access only, call 1-866-717-7377 weekdays from 9 to 5 or e-mail email@example.com.