I noticed something different when I opened the online Opinion Page of today's New York Times. It's been a couple of years since I've had access to the likes of columnists Frank Rick, Maureen Dowd, and Thomas Friedman, because the Times held them hostage to the Average Joe/Jane by imposing the nefarious "Times Select" embargo. "Times Select" was the not-so-brilliant idea that charged a fee - that's right! a fee! - for reading the paper's top opinionators.
When the pay-to-read toll was put in place, I said to meself, "Hm. Seems all that's going to do is cut down the readership of these top columnists, cuz who's gonna pay to read somebody else's opinion?" I figured that sooner or later, the Shining Stars would realize that their online audience had dissipated and would revolt. Anyway, you could find their opinions on other sites - most all of 'em are syndicated - so what was the point?
Seems that - as of today - the NYT has seen the light and discontinued "Times Select" fee-to-read. Welcome back, Maureen, Frank, Tom, and all! And as for you, NYT, I hope you've learned your lesson.