I’ve been a reader of Argentina’s national daily ‘La Nación’ for something like
16 years 17 years (come to think of it) and even though it’s moved from a neutral stance to the current Kirchnerist government to a very hostile and anti-Kirchnerist editorial line in the last few years, it’s always been more palatable and readable than the arch-haters of CFK over at Clarín. But today it’s goodbye forever, La Nación, because you’ve just adopted the world’s most stupid rules for viewing your reports and articles.
1) In a perfect world, a media channel on the web remains free of charge (e.g. The Guardian).
2) In a perfectly acceptable world you sign up your e-mail address and that lets you read the things, while your chosen media occasionally sends you a blurb in the mail (e.g FT Alphaville).
3) In an OK-I-Suppose world,the media channel runs a soft paywall, you get to read a limited number of pages per week or month, if you’re a big enough fan of the site you can then pay up for full access (e.g. The New York Times), or you can search for the workarounds (not too hard).
But what you do not do is what the numbskulls at La Nación now require of you. Because since late last week, if you go to the front page and if you click on a report the site prompts you to either sign in with Facebook or with Google. But it wants you to give your Facebook or Google password while signing up, too. Seriously. Are these people mad?
Therefore, as of today IKN has decided to offer two choices in the Argentina media links. You now have Clarín as an anti-government/CFK option, or you have Pagina 12 as the pro-govt/CFK choice. Neither is a great read (Clarín has gone more sensationalist over the years and its utter hatred of the CFK govt drips off the page, while Pagina 12 can be a dust-dry read and is rarely critical of a government that’s neither angel nor devil), but put the two together and you get a balanced window.
And they’re both free access. And neither is plug dumb stupid enough to ask for your sensitive online passwords. La Nación committed 21st century media suicide last week, the question is how long it’ll take before they realize this.