Tuesday, September 18, 2007

The New York Times Opens The Flood Gates

The Times has announced that, as of midnight this evening, content previously sheltered behind a firewall as part of their for-fee service, Times Select, will be openly accessible via the Web. This applies only to NYTimes content dated 1987 forward. This is a significant shift in the way news will be disseminated.

Staci Kramer notes some additional specifics following her interview with Vivian Schiller, SVP and GM of NYTimes.com: "Some content from 1923-1986 also will be available for free but the primary use of those years will be for e-commerce, Schiller said.

Also opened for access: personalization tools including online research and storage tools like News Tracker and Times File. Schiller said Times Reader will continue to be a subscription product; the premium crossword service continues as well."

Afternoon Update: See this blog entry containing a link to Jeff Jarvis' commentary that "whether or not content wants to be free, it is free"; it's the distributor's relationship with the customer that adds value

Thanks to Kevin Bouley and Michael Mahoney of Nerac for sending this along.

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