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No. 980
May 12th, 2011

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How to Read Unlimited Articles

I’m sure other people have posted this before–in fact I think Mike Blumenthal tweeted something similar last week but I can’t seem to find it via Twitter Search now.  At any rate…

Obviously the New York Times’ current pay wall is something I’m incredibly opposed to. I think it comes about as a result of mis-management and a bloated print production wing of the paper (no different from any other newspaper).  While the quality of journalism is typically pretty high at the NYT, most of the topics they cover can be found on other major media portals with similar levels of trust.

But, I have three favorite NYT Op-Ed columnists (Brooks, Friedman, and Kristof) whose columns I read rather religiously.  (as for Krugman, Dolt Dowd, and Douthat…well, we won’t go there).  Actually, I’d be more than happy to pay a nominal fee–say, $1.99 a month or $19.99 a year–for access to their columns, provided the lion’s share of my payment went to their salaries and tech-related overhead to maintain  Reading their columns is usually the only reason I go to the NYT site these days anyway.  And if there are other interesting stories in the ‘most read’ or ‘most emailed’ sidebar, I’ll probably click on them while I’m there.

But, that’s not the way the Times’ pay wall is set up, and lo and behold, I met my monthly limit this morning as I tried to read David Brooks’ latest Op-Ed.  Knowing about the Times’ well-publicized “first click free” strategy, though, I came across a very easy (and fast) solution.

#1 Browse to the article you want to read on
#2 Highlight the URL of the article from your browser’s address bar.
#3 Hit CTRL-C or Command-C.
#4 Visit or
#5 Enter your cursor in the search box.
#6 Hit CTRL-V or Command-V.
#7 Click “Search”
#8 Click the first search result.

Voila! You have arrived at your destination.  It only takes an extra two seconds at most…and if you have a search bar running by default in your browser you can even skip step #4!

  • As a devoted reader of the NYT I must say that the paper is well worth what they charge. I mean, come on — fantastic quality for nearly nothing?

    I want them to stay in business and thrive. You?

  • Nope, I’d rather see them cut their overhead and focus on a sustainable business model (i.e. online only–no print). If I knew my $$ was going only to necessary overhead, I’d have no qualms about paying them.

  • Scott Becker

    Google has given me great content for the last 10 years and it has always been free. Why not the NY Times? Thanks for the idea David.

  • David I agree whole heartedly with you. NYT’s is like a lot of companies that just can’t let go of the past, but that being said it has opened the door for new innovative companies like Huffington Post to come in. History seems to prove that the old guard would rather fall on their swords than change.

  • I do not think a sustainable business model for an on-line only newspaper has been achieved by anyone in the newspaper publishing industry. For example, David, you have figured out how to get unlimited access to the NYT. I know McClatchy has been scratching its head to figure out a workable business model for years with no success for this very reason.

  • Ha! The reason the model is not sustainable because they focus on the wrong ways to generate revenue. Trying to gain it from your readers by paying for content is not the right way because there are so many other resources out there. Why not focus on generating traffic and build relationships with other businesses who can benefit from your audience while still providing your audience with some benefits. Never seems to amaze me how so many institutions focus on the wrong things.

  • M-A

    I agree with Shawn. Businesses need to either re-invent themselves when their glory days come to an end and a substitute to their product is taking hold, or learn to back out of the game graciously. The New York Times will have no trouble at finding sponsors and advertisers who will gladly pay them for online ad space, an article here and there…

    Why make the online clients pay for print, a service they are actively fighting against by reading the articles online? It’s fraudulent and will not hold up for long, not in today’s economy that made consumers aware of their providers.

  • J-T

    There is a much easier way to see unlimited new york times articles. First, go to the article you want to read. Second, the article will be shortened and the “Get unlimited access now” popup will come up. Third, go to your url bar and erase everything after “.html”. After doing this, the pop up will disappear and not come back for this article. Read on America, Read on.

  • I agree with you Christopher, I also want NY times to stay in business, but I guess by reading them free so many people will get an access to it. Anyways, even if its for free they find sponsors so that they cant be bankrupt.

  • T

    Thanks, J-T – this works! (& if there’s no .html in the URL, erase everything after the ‘?’)