Tuesday, March 22, 2011

C-ya, nice knowin' ya.

Canadian cracks NYT paywall 
By William Wolfe-Wylie, QMI Agency 

Only a few days after the New York Times launched a paywall on its website for Canadian visitors, a Canadian programmer has come up with a free workaround to keep the site open to all, and it only took four lines of code.

David Hayes, a Kitchener, Ont., developer, cracked the paywall during his lunch break.
“It’s just a four-line script, plus a few more to allow me to update it,” he said in an e-mail to QMI Agency on Tuesday. “I wrote it over lunch. I’m a little surprised it took off, over 5,000 people are using it so far and it’s less than a day old.”
The code loads into a user’s browser as a button that looks like any other bookmark. When confronted with the paywall, users can click the button to reveal the full text of the article behind it.
The Times launched the Canadian paywall on March 17. It is expected to launch in the U.S. by the end of the month.


  1. We do not disagree, Selina. I, too, have loved the NYTimes.
    But digital changes the game, and old school locks or “paywalls” won’t work. For every lock there is a lockpick, and for every resistant lock there is a boltcutter. And it’s all done online in total anonymity.

    Unless collective world government sees value in an online Police state forcing accountability through draconian punishment, digital media as we knew it will be lost. Newspapers, books, music, movies, video games, any product, actually, in digital format. Someday, hopefully, they’ll be funded differently.

    But any organization that digs in and tries to force a legacy, analog pay model in the digital realm, as the NYTimes is trying, will lose. There are just too many dishonest people in the world, and too many more who celebrate them..