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Subscriptions

This document gives a quick introduction to some terminology needed when working with the Infosoft subscription systems.

This topic contains the following sections:

In order to ensure a proper user experience, and to ensure proper integration/use of the webservices provided by the Infosystems, it is nessecary to understand some of the terms that are used throughout the system and how they related. This document attempts to do precisely that.

Terminology
Title

A newspaper publication, typically also a legal entity. Examples are Dagens Næringsliv, Borås Tidning, Kristeligt Dagblad or The New York Times

Product

A smaller unit within a title, typically combining a set of distribution days with some price. For instance a product could encompass the Friday and Saturday editions of The New York Times

Term

Defines the interval at which a subscriber should recieve an invoice (or a recurring payment should occur). The term also defines the initial length of a subscription.

Customer

The basic person/company/customer entity in the system. A customer encompases information such as name, address, phone and email.

Subscription

A subscription is essentially an economic relation between a customer, a title, a product and a term.

Distribution Date

The date for the next physical distribution. Any changes done now will not have an effect untill the next distribution date.

For instance if a new subscription is ordered at 15:00 on wedensday, that order will not be active untill the next distribution date, which will typically be on thursday.

Customers and Subscriptions

In the Infosystems customers and subscriptions are two different entities. Customers can exists without a subscription and no existing economic relation to the business. In these cases customers will often be denoted as prospects by the business people. A subscription identifies what the customer has bought and for how long. Basically everything that relates to a purchase is somehow connected to a subscription. One customer can have any number of subscriptions, but only one subscription per title at a time.

Determining subscription price

Normally we tend to think that a product has a fixed price. This is rarely true, and thus specifying the price for a subscription is not just a matter of looking into a static table with prices. The following attributes are taken into consideration when determining the price of a subscription.

Base cost

The base cost of a given subscription product

Distribution Fee

A fee based on the cost of distributing the physical newspaper to a given area. This typically depends on the delivery country and zip code

Fixed discount

A fixed discount percentage or amount can be applied to a subscription

Offer discount

Offers might be extended for limited periods, affecting the base cost as a percentage or a fixed amount

Term discount

A discount given based on the length of the subscription. If you subscribe for a whole year and pay in advance you get a discount.

VAT (product type)

Some product types have different VAT/Tax values that affects the price. In Norway traditional physical newspapers has been exempt from VAT while digital subscriptions included a full 25% VAT

Because of all these parameters needs to be considered the developer needs to know these parameters if the price should be shown in advance. It is recommended that an initial price is shown based on a subset of parameters and then the price is updated as the registration process moves along and more data has been gathered.

Requirements for a subscription

To create a new subscription, a few minimum requirements must be met.

  1. A name

  2. An address (Street, Zip, Country)

  3. A title that subscription should cover

  4. A product that should be subscribed to

  5. A term determining how often to pay and the initial length of the subscription

  6. A start date for the subscription

Everything else is optional in terms of system requirements, however various configurations can be changed to require other parameters. Discuss with the business people what requirements they have.

Note Note

Note that specifying some parameters enforces others to become required as they cannot stand alone.

Requirement configuration is often done on a per-title basis, so be aware that a requirement on one title might not be a requirement on another.

See Also