G&M screws up

The Globe & Mail has just locked down their site. For months, the G&M has been an excellent online paper: All the headlines were easily listed, along with links to editorials, commentary, or ‘deeper’ articles. These have all been free for the viewing.

Recently (about 4 months ago, if I recall correctly), they added in a registration requirement. Which, while I don’t like much as a user, as web developer & business owner, I understand. Collecting useful demographic data on your users is incredibly important, for all sorts of reasons. It should help them boost ad revenues, create more targeted content, etc. So I was willing to live with that.

But now, all of a sudden, vast tracts of the site are completely off-limit unless you get an online subscription. And it’s not even that cheap – the Globe is asking for $14.95 a month to access their online content. Now, compared to a print subscription, that’s pretty cheap, I admit. But, assuming their content remains somewhat the same as it has been, I don’t know if it’s worth that much. Given that for the most part, all news stories are available somewhere else online for free, in some manner, it’s a real hard sell. Had they made the cost negligable (I’m thinking like $5/month), I might have considered it. But $15/month seems a lot to me. It’s above that significant mental barrier of $10 (I think it’s the extra digit that makes it seem so much larger).

So now I feel like I need to change my homepage. The G&M has been my homepage for years and years now, but I’m so annoyed by this. Seeing those little keys indicating locked content over every article just pisses me off. But who to make my new homepage? There’s a lack of great Canadian news sites now. I won’t use any of the Canada.com sites (incl. the Nat. Post), I don’t like the CBC.ca site (to cluttered/narrow), I no longer like the Globe, and the Toronto Star is, well, Toronto. I suspect I might just pop up, say the BBC or Guardian site (which both provide startlingly excellent N. American news coverage). Or perhaps the NY Times, which likewise has good coverage (and seems to still have full access to recent articles to registered users).

Anyone have any good homepage recommendations? What’s your homepage?

4 Replies to “G&M screws up”

  1. I’m in exactly the same situation. Ever since I got a computer that could display webpages I have had the g&m; as my homepage. the whole idea of leaving that is a bit sad but I’ll be damned if I have to deal with a small selection of articles that I can read.
    I fear that there is now no good Canadien website from which to get recent news. The problem with others like the bbc and the nytimes is that they take a bit longer to load which is irritating for a homepage. I suppose that this is just the end for me using a homepage and I’ll simply create a simple html document on my local machine that will show other news links that I can decide on.

  2. I’m in exactly the same situation. Ever since I got a computer that could display webpages I have had the g&m as my homepage. the whole idea of leaving that is a bit sad but I’ll be damned if I have to deal with a small selection of articles that I can read.
    I fear that there is now no good Canadien website from which to get recent news. The problem with others like the bbc and the nytimes is that they take a bit longer to load which is irritating for a homepage. I suppose that this is just the end for me using a homepage and I’ll simply create a simple html document on my local machine that will show other news links that I can decide on.

  3. My homepage is my webpage, but I implemented an RSS aggregator for it so I can get all my news on there as well. But I’ve had a hard time finding good RSS feeds for Canadian news. G&M; is the only one that actually offers RSS feeds (http://www.theglobeandmail.com/generated/headlines/rdf/National.rdf), poorly formatted as they may be. They still seem to work but I’m not sure if the articles they link to will be restricted access (I tried 2 at random and they are fine).
    CBC has no feed. I also subscribe to BBC and Reuters feeds. Trouble with BBC feed is that it only seems to update once a day (funny that their slogan is “Updated every minute of every day”).
    You should also check out Google News. I hope they have a feed one day.

    But yeah, you could do something like what I do, set up your own custom page full of RSS feeds 🙂

  4. My homepage is my webpage, but I implemented an RSS aggregator for it so I can get all my news on there as well. But I’ve had a hard time finding good RSS feeds for Canadian news. G&M is the only one that actually offers RSS feeds (http://www.theglobeandmail.com/generated/headlines/rdf/National.rdf), poorly formatted as they may be. They still seem to work but I’m not sure if the articles they link to will be restricted access (I tried 2 at random and they are fine).
    CBC has no feed. I also subscribe to BBC and Reuters feeds. Trouble with BBC feed is that it only seems to update once a day (funny that their slogan is “Updated every minute of every day”).
    You should also check out Google News. I hope they have a feed one day.

    But yeah, you could do something like what I do, set up your own custom page full of RSS feeds 🙂

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