Getting The News Outside of the El Lay and NY Paywalls

So today the Los Angeles Times followed the New York Times behind a paywall.    I had previously been a regular reader of the New York Times.   I first found the little pop-ups telling me that I had viewed # of the 20 free stories I was allowed this month annoying.    After a couple of months of reading most of my free allowance,   I stopped visiting the New York Times web site at all.   Indeed,  when  New York put up the paywall,  I started using the Los Angeles Times more often.  El Lay’s paywall implementation was quite different than New York’s.   On the day it became effective,  visiting the site brought you to a sign up screen.   None of the annoying pop ups warning that you are reading up your allowance.    And honestly,  the 99 cents they demanded is far from a prohibitive price point,  even for people whose budgets are as limited as mine is.

What stopped me from signing up and forking over my credit card number is the fact that nowhere did I see any mention whatsoever about what the regular price would be after the 99 cent month is over.   Having worked in an industry that was built around recurring monthly charges to consumer credit cards,  I am all too well aware of horror stories from folks who signed up to pay a small fee for something and ended up getting billed for months or years for something else they had not intended to buy and pay for.    For the moment,  I am getting my news from newspapers that don’t have pay walls.   Here is a list of some of my favorites.    Do you read newspapers online?    Which ones?   Leave a comment and let me know and I will add it to this list.

The Seattle Times

The Seattle PI

The Washington Post

The Christian Science Monitor

The Houston Chronicle

The Chicago Tribune

The Times Picayune

The Plain Dealer

The Oregonian

The Boston Herald

The Knoxville Sentinel

The Fresno Bee

The Austin Statesman

The Miami Herald

The Guardian (UK)

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34 comments on “Getting The News Outside of the El Lay and NY Paywalls

  1. Washington Post is one i read online and even got it attached to my FB profile. Lazy to remove that 😦

    The Guardian is another i frequent. (also clubbed with my FB id). Since i stayed in Seattle for a year read Seattle Times and anyother that gives me news in there.

    Detroit, Ann Arbor and MI – any newspapers sites i find online i dive into it.

  2. I don’t read a single traditional newspaper that is behind a paywall. There are too many other sources for news. Sidenote: I think it’s hilarious that you spell it El Lay instead of LA

  3. I wouldn’t mind paying to read news , i didn’t mind Paying for a newspaper . Sucking you in with free newspapers Delivered to your home or your Computer . no different .
    Key is Are they Delivering News or Editorial . I think news is a forgotten art Sad . Watching TV news Now . It Starts of with American IDol Stuff . Of Course its Fox . Is what happened on American Idol the biggest news Story of the day

    • John, your comment pretty much sums up why I never watch any television news anymore. Shhhh. Don’t tell, but I could care less who’s on American Idol.

  4. Hi Alan,
    I used to read the Dallas Morning News (local paper) online but they also put up a pay wall.

    I knew a bunch of reporters there and a lot of them were laid off before the paywall went up. I stopped reading the DMN from that point on. Now I read Yahoo, CNN, Google News or Mashable.

    I used to love to buy the DMN or The New York Times and read it from cover to cover. I miss that pleasure but like you, I worry about starting at 99 cents and winding up with a big bill.

    ~Karen

    • It really is a money thing for me, Karen. I have to be very careful about keeping down expenses, lest the month far exceed the money and there is just no way I’m going to pay 17 bucks a month for a newspaper. If I lived in a city with only one paper and it went paywall, I might seriously consider subscribing….but 17 bucks a month would be way too much even then.

  5. The L.A. Times website:
    Will be offering a special promotional membership for 99 cents for unrestricted digital access for four weeks.
    After that, the membership will be $3.99 per week, billed every four weeks.

    • Thanks for the info, Ron. They are not publicizing this price widely. No big surprise there. 16 bucks plus per month. #FAIL I don’t live El Lay and I don’t NEED to read that particular newspaper. I might actually be willing to pay a dollar a month. But no way am I going to pay 16.something. They’re making the same mistake big publishing companies made on eBooks. /SIGHS Now watch their Alexa climb and their PR plummet.

      • I am sorry that I can’t officially comment. BTW I love that candy corn pie that is currently on your background.

  6. I prefer my news in E format. Less clutter for me.
    I believe that people need to make a living so I do not mind paying for an E newspaper of my choosing if I am going to daily read it.

    I had a Nook subscription to the NYT for a small amount of time and I noticed I was getting behind on my News reading. I canceled the subscription and do not feel so pressured to read the news 🙂

    • exactly. I did like reading the NY Times but lord knows I didn’t ever try to read ALL of it. If they made it inexpensive I think a lot of casual readers like me would be willing to pay a nominal amount. But the price is far too rich for my blood.

      • Yes I agree especially when I am only reading about 25 % of it without comics to boot 😉

  7. I am quite old-fashioned, I like paper newspapers but never buy!

    Fortunately Marca.com gives me great Spanish sport and SportingLIfe.com gives me UK football.

    None of the Spanish papers are chargable and if they were, I’d boycott them too – especially as they are crammed with ads, pop-ups etc

    • For years I worked the graveyard shift and one thing I did like, I often got to read the newspapers as soon as they were delivered very early in the morning. I do Like newspapers. But I too get my news free online.

  8. Thank you for a good list of newspapers.

    I share both your irritation with the NY Times pop ups and your aversion to signing up for anything with recurring credit card charges. The latter from my own time-consuming and costly experiences with cancelling services no longer satisfactory or required.

    Now my e news reading consists of my 20 free views of NY Times, occasional visits to the Washington Post, The Daily Telegraph and the Guardian in the UK and various other sources.

    It is probably an age thing, but there is still something about a real newspaper that is enjoyable, I spend no more than 5 minutes a day scanning our local small town daily, that is quicker than trying to keep up with local events on-line. My one luxury is spending an hour or so reading the Saturday edition of our Canadian National Post.

    For solid reading, as opposed to scanning headlines, I much prefer the feel of the paper in my hands. I also find that as a way of improving my own writing, it is much easier to study sentence construction, vocabulary, creative word usage and grammar on paper than on a screen.

    • Peter, I love paper. I have paper books that I reread again and again. Honestly, I prefer reading newspapers on my computer. The big pages are awkward to hold and I truly hate having to find the continuation of the story on page 7. Until I got my tablet, I strongly preferred reading printed books to trying to read book length texts on my puter screen. My tablet works quite well as an eReader. But I still get paper review copies and borrow paper books from libraries. I hope I’m always able to continue getting paper books. Much as I feel blessed to live in the era of the ebook.

  9. I dont read any news paper, as i get the news thru the net, or maybe the TV, there are 100’s of them, to hear…..

  10. I tend to get most of my news online via mashable or yahoo news (or even twitter .. although I always look at the source on twitter)..

  11. You will be unsurprised to hear that my favourite of your list is The Guardian (often called the Grauniad because of the number of typos). I too used to use the NYT, but have given up.

  12. Hate newspapers. Haven’t read one in at least 7 years. I totally rely on news on line, tv…blah blah…I’m not lazy! I’m not!!! 🙂 I’m just busy 🙂

    I tend to stay away from news that pisses me off with a slant in their political ideology. Unless, of course, I’m feeling a bit testy…

    • I might be persuaded to pay 20/year. 12 per year I’d be much more likely to be persuaded. I can’t afford 200 so they’ve lost me as a reader. As I’ve tried to show in the list above (which I have been adding to) I enjoy reading news and opinion from a wide variety of sources. There is no way in hell I will ever pay 200 to each of them every year. I just find myself hoping the newspaper industry will wake up and smell the coffee before they are completely kaput.

    • You know, Steve, when I think about it when I worked at the library was the last time I looked at newspapers regularly. I rarely had time to actually read one, but I checked them in, stamped them and put them out for the patrons each day. I love it that libraries still have Lots of paper 🙂

  13. news dot google dot com, google doc com slash reader and a news breakers list column in tweetdeck are my newspaper. Sometimes I’ll fire up el jazeera live and minimize the window and half listen as I work in the early morning too.

    I don’t have any objection to paying for a news source, if i could find ONE news source I trusted enough, but I can’t so I don’t.

  14. I read the New York Times. But I read it just short of paying for it: the allowed free articles per month. The articles, admittedly, are much to my liking. But I found the subscription price to be way out of line. My main news source online is Huffington Post. We’re news junkies, so you’ll catch us tuning into lots of news radio and TV broadcasts at home, too.

  15. Pingback: Blowing Through The Paywalls In My Mind | Libdrone's Thoughts and Musings

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