Maybe you’re reading this column at the kitchen table with your cup of coffee at your elbow.

Or perhaps you’ve wandered over to the computer to access the news at

Two different experiences, but the same emphasis on local news — what’s happening with the city councils in our area, what new restaurant is opening, who scored the winning touchdowns on Friday night.

We value all of our customers. Many pay a subscription fee to get the Quad-City Times delivered to their doorstep.

Beginning on Thursday, Sept. 20, the Times will charge a nominal fee for unlimited access to our online offerings.

All visitors will be able to view 15 pages for free during any 30-day period starting with your first visit. Site features such as breaking news, photo galleries, calendar of events, videos, high school sports statistics, Hawkeyes football and basketball coverage, advertising and national and international news provided by the Associated Press will not be “metered,” meaning they will not count toward the 15 pages.

On football nights, many of you participate in Friday

Night Tweets, an area-wide conversation about preps online. Those types of live chats will not be metered.

Depending on what kind of information you’re interested in, it’s possible you might not reach the 15 articles monthly limit. Everyone’s online reading habits are different.

Once you’ve reached the 15-page limit, you will be asked if you’re interested in signing up for unlimited digital access for $5.95 a month. If you already subscribe to the Times print edition, you can get unlimited online access for $1.95 a month. Registration begins on Thursday.

While carries many of the articles you read in the Times, there is also a different kind of reporting we’re doing for online. During recent campaign appearances by President Barack Obama and Gov. Mitt Romney, for example, we had many reporters stationed at different locations, sending “tweets,” or short bursts of information that fed continuously on the website. This kind of digital reporting lends a feeling of “you are there.” You will see more of that in the future.

The demands for digital information are growing, and the assessment of a nominal fee will allow us to continue to bring you local information, conversations and points of view that you can’t get anywhere else.

Adjacent to my column today is a short list of questions and answers about our new metered content system that I hope you find helpful.

As always, feel free to email me at or call me at 563-383-2264 with any questions or concerns you have.

And thanks for reading the Times in print and online.

Jan Touney is executive editor of the Quad-City Times and