I'm not rich. There I've said it. Like most people my age I have to be a bit frugal. Extravagance is for those on the way up.
And so I have to bid a temporary adieu to the Toronto Star after discovering I have used up my quota of 10-free stories a month. I don't begrudge them their paywall. In fact I think paywalls are necessary to sustain quality journalism, an argument made convincingly in last month's Harper's magazine.
I already subscribe to a newspaper, the Victoria Times Colonist, and I enjoy finding it waiting for me at my front door every morning save Monday. As far as online newspapers go, there's only one I would pay for and that's The Guardian. It's my "go to" newspaper and I wouldn't do without it.
I wanted to check out the latest on Rob Ford this morning, just gawking. That's when I found out I have to go away for a week or two until the "reset button" let's me back in. No problem, there were plenty of free sources of the real skinny on the real fatty to be had.
The thing with paywall news websites is that you come to realize just what most of them are really worth to you. To me, Torstar simply isn't worth the price of admission. If I lived in Toronto or anywhere in Ontario for that matter it might be a different story but I don't even live on the same continental landmass as Toronto.
So I'll gratefully accept the ten free stories they'll allow me a month. It will mean just a very little bit of effort to find the stories I want elsewhere. At the same time I hope you Ontarians will subscribe to Torstar. It's just about our only hope of holding back the barbarians of the corporate media cartel. If you want genuine, valuable information you have to be willing to pay for it. If you want free, you have to accept that you won't be getting information, you will be fed messaging packaged as information. That's how corporate media works and you are their lawful prey.