[UPDATE (12:14 PM) : It is even weirder than I thought. ALL the links work fine if I use IE but if I use Safari on my Mac, I get redirected to a payment page. So this seems to be a browser specific thing. I’m logged on properly and can get recent articles. But if I go to here in Safari, I have to pay but if it is in IE, it is free. Another win for the MS monopoly or is it just me?]
Well, something very weird is going on at the New York Times. Some of my old links work but a lot do not. For instance, this link, which should take you to a science article about a very acidic river, now takes you to a page requiring payment to read more. But often, for the links that work, the NYT own Archive search does not see them. For example, this article by Nicolas Wade, <a HREF=”http://www.nytimes.com/2002/06/21/science/21STEM.html”Scientists Make Two Stem Cell Advances from 6/21/2002, is still accessible but I could not find it by searching the NYT archives.
Or try this one. The NYT had a large number of articles about the 50th anniversary of DNA. You can access each article fine from here. But if you search from the archives, you will get links that make you pay.
Dave Winer commented yesterday that things were back to normal and the links were open but if you click on his dead link example, the one that worked on Monday but did not on Sunday… well, access is not free anymore. So I have to figure that the supposed “opening” of the archives may be premature.
So, until I hear more clarification, I am assuming that the links that you can get to are just ones that have slipped through the cracks. Over 50% of my links over 30 days old no longer give you free access. Since I can not know which will remain free and which will cost, I will continue to refuse using the NYT to link to.