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The Media News

New York Times Halves Monthly Free Article Views To Ten 178

Posted by Unknown Lamer
from the nine-after-reading-this dept.
An anonymous reader writes "The New York Times has announced that, starting in April, visitors to NYTimes.com will only be able to access 10 free articles a month, down from 20 articles currently. The NYTimes paywall was put into effect last year, and seems to have been a success, with nearly half a million digital subscriptions to all of Times Co.'s websites; this despite the fact that the paywall is trivial to circumvent (for example, by deleting all cookies from nytimes.com)." The submitter included a link to the WSJ article on the change, which appears to also be paywalled.
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New York Times Halves Monthly Free Article Views To Ten

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  • Re:Oh Well (Score:5, Informative)

    by nospam007 (722110) * on Wednesday March 21, 2012 @10:14AM (#39426953)

    "If people don't like it they can get their news somewhere else or buy a subscription. This is how the market is supposed to work."

    Or they could just delete the cookie and read on.

  • Re:Oh Well (Score:5, Informative)

    by Hadlock (143607) on Wednesday March 21, 2012 @10:24AM (#39427109) Homepage Journal

    I just open all NYT and WSJ articles in "incognito mode" or whatever it's called on your favorite browser.
     
    I like to think of it as a game, where you lose one life each time you accidentally click on an article without opening it in incognito mode. If you lose all 10 lives, you "lose" the game and can't read good journalism for the remainder of the month.

  • Re:Oh Well (Score:5, Informative)

    by IMightB (533307) on Wednesday March 21, 2012 @11:38AM (#39428033) Journal

    It's actually pretty amazing to change your agent string to googlebot and see what opens up for you. For example, all those tech sites that want you to sign up to get an answer suddenly become wide open.

  • Re:Oh Well (Score:4, Informative)

    by MightyYar (622222) on Wednesday March 21, 2012 @11:47AM (#39428167)

    I don't pay for it because, while I think the Times' reporting is top-notch, the print side has too much power and keeps the digital version artificially high to prevent poaching. The Kindle version is $20/month and is totally gimped and does not include digital access. Meanwhile the dead-tree edition is about $30/month and comes with unlimited digital access. You can get the dead-tree edition weekday-only for the same price as the Kindle version, and that also includes unlimited digital access.

    But this is the best part: just digital access, no Kindle, no dead-tree is... $8.75/week! Yes, $38/month for less product than the dead tree edition. The mind boggles. I refuse to pile up a bunch of unused newspapers just to save $18/month for digital access, so they can pound sand.

  • by Gilmoure (18428) on Wednesday March 21, 2012 @11:57AM (#39428311) Journal

    Everyone's too polite in Canada to make news.

  • Re:Oh Well (Score:4, Informative)

    by tlhIngan (30335) <slashdot@worfMOSCOW.net minus city> on Wednesday March 21, 2012 @02:07PM (#39430337)

    That's the big problem though. What constitutes a "read", and how do they really track it? Simply clicking on a link to an article shouldn't really count as a read, as you could denial-of-service a whole bunch of people simply by sending them to a page with a bunch of iframes. It doesn't even fit with how many people use the internet, where they will open 15 links in different tabs, gloss over the first paragraph, decide the rest isn't worth reading and close the tab.

    I know the old exception is quite easy. You could go to NYTimes.com and read 20 articles a month there.

    Linked articles from blogs don't count, and neither do articles linked from search engines. The reasoning for this is simple - blogs and search engines bring in viewers. If they stay, they can read 20 more (or 10 now) articles for free on the main site.

    Basically, occasional readers (those who read via blogs and such) aren't subject to much paywalling at all.

    And that's why the NYTimes paywall is a success where other paywalls failed.

    Other paywalls let you read a paragraph or two before demanding payment. NYTimes lets you read the rest for free. If you like it, you may read more until you hit your limit. But you won't hit your limit if you only read NYTimes via another website.

    There are enough ways to bypass the paywall that those who really wanted to could (basically by googling the headline and clicking that way), but most people are lazy and having to google to read another article gets old fast.

    Basically, NYTimes found a way to get its articles read (via blogs and news aggregators like Google) but still being able to get some money from those who like it enough to read it (by not offering it entirely for free). So it doesn't matter how many times NYTimes articles appear in say, /. since they don't count. But those who wanted to read the NYTimes for free by using its website is blocked.

    Pretty brilliant, actually. Blogs and aggregators bring people in, and you only charge them if they stay. First hit's free.

FORTRAN is a good example of a language which is easier to parse using ad hoc techniques. -- D. Gries [What's good about it? Ed.]

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