After introducing a "hard" paywall in November 2011, tiny local newspaper Hallingdölen in Ål, Norway, boasts of its best financial year ever in 2012.
The name of its businessmodel? "Ål inclusive" (the term refers to how only paying subscribers can access the paper on all platforms).
Fascinating. And if you know that "betalingsmur" is Norwegian for paywall, Google does a half-decent job if you try running this Kampanje-piece on the story through Google translate.
As I wrote about for Journalism.co.uk, Scandinavian media was hit by a bit of a paywall craze last year, so a lot of people will be watching this and the early results from other recent paywall-projects very closely. Hallingdölen also claims, in the before-mentioned article, to have been the inspiration for another recent and much talked about paywall-project, that of Norwegian regional Faedrelandsvennen (which I blogged about here).
What makes this extra interesting, is that this story comes in the same week as Facebook introduced it latest revamp and with re-newed vigour made clear its ambitions to become "the world's best personal" newspaper - or position itself as your (hyper)local newspaper if you like.
So where does this leave local newspapers long-term? How long before Facebook will conquer the (hyper)local ad market? Or will Facebook's hübris and blantant disregard for its users privacy have killed it off before it ever can conquer such a positon in a rural part of a country on the outskirts of the world such as Norway (albeit a country with a very impressive broadband penetration)?