Paywall startup Tinypass adds metered subscriptions for small publishers

New York-based startup Tinypass, which helps small publishers and content creators charge for content online through existing platforms like Google (s GOOG), is rolling out metered content options to all of its clients.

Tinypass, which signed up its first four publishers in December 2011 and says it now works with over 250 publishers (through a revenue share — see below), had tested the metering option with the news site Chicago Phoenix and is now making it available to everyone. The metering function is built into Tinypass’s WordPress and Drupal plugins and its APIs, and publishers can choose to meter by number of articles retrieved or by time frame (say, unlimited content for 24 hours).

Publishers who want to add a meter can choose from two options: client-side, which works by adding a cookie to a user’s browser, or server-side, which a user can’t circumvent by clearing cookies. Publishers can also choose whether they want to include links from social networks in a metered article limit, or whether they want those to be free views.

Tinypass makes money through a revenue share with publishers — taking a cut that ranges from 2 percent to 10 percent depending on volume. (The publisher’s share increases as volume increases.) That’s one way the company differentiates itself from Steve Brill and Gordon Crovitz’s Press+ (now owned by RR Donnelley), which charges publishers a setup fee. Also, Tinypass COO David Restrepo told me, Press+ is “very focused on newspapers and on bundling the physical paper with digital editions,” while Tinypass is “digital-native, digital-first and focused on media” like MP3s and PDFs, not just newspapers.

Tinypass was founded in January 2011 as part of Hudson Media Ventures and has raised $500,000 $1,000,000 in angel funding.