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Letters to the World » 2004 » April » 16

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Letters to the World


Another newspaper falls victim to registration insanity

Filed under: General — codeman38 @ 1:25 pm

Mrgh! Now the Atlanta Journal-Constitution wants me to provide my name, address and phone number just to read a news article on the site…

Why do newspapers think this is a good idea? I just have to wonder how much false information they get on these forms. I can handle the e-mail spam, but it’s not so easy to filter one’s phone calls and snail mail. And not everyone exactly feels comfortable giving out contact information to any random party. I’m seriously tempted to fill out the form using obviously false information like a phone number of 404-NOT-FOUN (wonder if they’d notice the area-code pun?) and an address of 40 Gigabyte Drive…

Really, if you’re just going for demographics, asking for year of birth and zip code would probably be enough. There’s no reason you need to actually have our contact information.

And I love this part of their privacy policy:

The more you tell us about yourself, the more value we can offer you. Supplying such information is entirely voluntary. But if you don’t supply the information we need, we may be unable to provide you with services we make available to other visitors to our site.

Uh, yeah. How “voluntary” is it if I can’t even read an article without having to go through the full registration process, especially when it balks at me if I don’t provide my address and phone number?

And now, a moment of surreality…

Filed under: General — codeman38 @ 12:37 am

HumanDescent Gallery

Through the magic of Photoshop, here are some of the most bizarre hybrid creatures imaginable. Marvel at such strange beings as the birdberry, squirreldog, zebrapillar, and several species of dogbird and catbird, including the very rare pengcat…

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