Jump to content
  • Welcome to the eG Forums, a service of the eGullet Society for Culinary Arts & Letters. The Society is a 501(c)3 not-for-profit organization dedicated to the advancement of the culinary arts. These advertising-free forums are provided free of charge through donations from Society members. Anyone may read the forums, but to post you must create an account.

Norm Matthews

NYT pay to play recipes

Recommended Posts

Since the NYT now has recipes set up so one must pay a subscription fee to see them, I have noticed, for instance, the following blocked recipe titles:  Grilled Cheese Sandwich, Tomato Sandwich, Wedge Salad, Chicken Parmesan and Pasta Puttanesca.   

 

What is so special about wedge salad or grilled cheese that makes one feel the need to pay to see how to make them?  Such food, if not intuitive, is at least so common as to be easily accessible.  The first time I saw Puttanesca was over 40 years ago when it was called Harlots sauce.

  • Like 4

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'm with you @Norm Matthews. It's silly what people think they can charge for.

 

Oh - whole grain bread sliced thin, decent cheese of your choice, a couple thin slices of tomato, and some red onion also sliced thin. I toast one side of the bread in a dry skillet, put mustard on one toasted side and mayo on the other. Build the sandwich toasted side in and toast again in a skillet until the outsides are toasted and cheese just begins to melt.

 

That will be $2.45 please. *grin*

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have a subscription to NYT Cooking by virtue of subscribing to the electronic version of the newspaper, and cooking came along in the deal. I absolutely find the paper worth the $19.95 or whatever it is a month; I doubt I'd pay a separate subscription for Cooking alone.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
8 minutes ago, kayb said:

I have a subscription to NYT Cooking by virtue of subscribing to the electronic version of the newspaper, and cooking came along in the deal. I absolutely find the paper worth the $19.95 or whatever it is a month; I doubt I'd pay a separate subscription for Cooking alone.

 

 

I too have a monthly digital subscription to the NYT which, as @kayb says, includes the cooking section.  I would not pay for only the cooking section.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I get home delivery of the Sunday paper which includes digital access.  Like others have said, I wouldn't pay extra for NYT Cooking but given the difficulties newspapers are dealing with, I don't begrudge their efforts to generate income via the recipe archives. 

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The Athletic is a newish sports paid subscription. Not crazy expensive and they promise in depth stuff rather than the 500 words you'd get at a newspaper.com. They hired the best sports writers in major cities and are doing well with it. 

 

Perhaps a similar deal could be done with food...fair price...serious content...no recipes for grilled cheese. Maybe cobble together CI , serious eats, and eater

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Interesting idea @gfweb I would have expected more than wedge salad and grilled cheese from any paid recipe site, and especially more from  NYT.  My first reaction was they are slipping or sliding into meeting deadlines.

  • Like 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
5 hours ago, Norm Matthews said:

Interesting idea @gfweb I would have expected more than wedge salad and grilled cheese from any paid recipe site, and especially more from  NYT.  My first reaction was they are slipping or sliding into meeting deadlines.

 

So it is your feeling that the archive should be curated in a way that wedge salad and grilled cheese recipes would either be free or culled from the site while more complex or innovative recipes might be deemed worthy of a subscription cost?  

Or do you have an objection to paying any fee to access the NYT recipe archives? 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 Here’s my take for what it’s worth which is not very much!  

 

To those of us in the Western world a grilled cheese sandwich or a wedge salad certainly seem so simplistic as to barely warrant a recipe. Does that hold for the rest of the world? And where do you draw the line between those recipes that are too simplistic to charge for and those that are worth something in monetary terms?

 

 As an ex journalism student and a former (well-paid) op-ed writer, I sympathize with the plight of print journalism. But trying to prop it up by selling recipes does not sound to me like a sound business proposition. 

  • Like 3

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The New York Times doesn't need me to defend them, and I have an all-access subscription, so Cooking isn't costing me anything extra. However --

 

If all you want is a recipe for a grilled cheese sandwich or a wedge salad, an NYT cooking subscription is probably not a smart investment. Just post a question here in the Cooking forum, if you really can't figure it out. @Anna N asked a similar question yesterday about macaroni and cheese, and in a matter of minutes, she had at least three-and-a-half intelligent answers. On the other hand, if you're looking for a recipe, and all you can remember is it was by Pierre Franey, using chicken breasts, about five seconds in the NYT recipe archives will yield more than 60 possibilities.

 

Among major US newspapers, very few don't charge you for archive searches these days. Rather than carping about what the Times has done, maybe we should be a tiny bit grateful that they've split off their recipes, so you don't have to pay to be able to search parts of the paper you don't care about. Last I checked, a subscription to Cooking cost $40/year. It's not cheap, but aside from the bargains @Toliver tempts us with regularly, it's not much more than the regular price of a cookbook.

 

Having said all that, I think the subscription model is a bad one in this case. I think they'd make more money by instituting a per-recipe fee. You sign up once, give them a credit card number, and agree to pay 50 cents or a buck (or whatever) per recipe, following a reasonable preview. After that, the micropayment could be automatic, or confirmed with a checkbox at each instance.

  • Like 5

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Agreed . Dave. I feel bit guilty when I look at the beautiful ideas on the  Guardian's food page. The box pops up to pay voluntarily. I just read for ideas but still I AM using the info.  Something to think about. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

PS: I think the LosAngeles Times also requires subscription for recipes.I have an accidental e-paper account I've never activated. You can read articles to an extent and then need to pay. Why should a paper be free?  All those little boys even during hardest times running up and down the street hawking papers - we've been willing to pay in the hardest of times. Now we expect everthing free on the net...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
4 hours ago, Anna N said:

 Here’s my take for what it’s worth which is not very much!  

 

To those of us in the Western world a grilled cheese sandwich or a wedge salad certainly seem so simplistic as to barely warrant a recipe. Does that hold for the rest of the world? And where do you draw the line between those recipes that are too simplistic to charge for and those that are worth something in monetary terms?

 

 As an ex journalism student and a former (well-paid) op-ed writer, I sympathize with the plight of print journalism. But trying to prop it up by selling recipes does not sound to me like a sound business proposition. 

 

There's not a good business proposition for newspapers these days, other than finding new revenue centers within their operation. I get much less incensed about charging partial subscriptions, if you will, for specific areas of the newspaper, i.e., Cooking, than I do about what I still consider the horrendous practice of charging to publish obituaries and wedding and engagement announcements. But when there are so many other options for the advertising dollar, if a newspaper's going to remain a going concern, it's got to look for revenue wherever it can.

 

This isn't just an academic exercise for me. My career was in newspaper journalism for the first 20 years of my working life. I saw the writing on the wall and got out in the late 1990s, and I've been eternally grateful I got out when I did. A good friend who started in the biz about the same time I did and stayed got laid off year before last. She's not alone among many other people whose paths I've crossed professionally over the years. I would hate like hell to know I had to try to find a job at 63 with no experience other than writing, editing or managing a newspaper for the past 40 years.

 

That's one reason I don't object to the all-access subscription, and think it's pretty smart for the NYC to split Cooking off in its subscription package for those who just want that, and little if anything else. As for recipes for a wedge salad or grilled cheese, well, there are a lot of other things in the site that are much more worthwhile. But I am not an accomplished enough cook but what I accept that perhaps someone might do something to either a wedge salad or a grilled cheese that I hadn't thought of (hell, I never thought of using fried green tomatoes on a BLT until I had one that way at a restaurant, and it's sheer genius, and I've been making BLTs for a half-century).  So, OK, include 'em. If my salad options are down to iceberg lettuce and dressing, I might look at the collection for ideas on how to jazz it up. YMMV.

  • Like 5

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, kayb said:

This isn't just an academic exercise for me. My career was in newspaper journalism for the first 20 years of my working life. I saw the writing on the wall and got out in the late 1990s, and I've been eternally grateful I got out when I did. A good friend who started in the biz about the same time I did and stayed got laid off year before last. She's not alone among many other people whose paths I've crossed professionally over the years. I would hate like hell to know I had to try to find a job at 63 with no experience other than writing, editing or managing a newspaper for the past 40 years.

 

Many of my freelance colleagues have long and impressive histories in print media, either magazines or newspapers (up to and including NYT and WaPo). Now they grind out content (or copyedit said content) for relative peanuts, without benefits, for a random collection of websites.

 

You do what you have to.

  • Sad 2

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Supposedly I get the NY Times for free from work (our library system) but the recipes don't function.  The library pays a lot for this.  The NY Times can stuff it in my opinion.  They charge but they do not deliver.

 

In contrast the Wall Street Journal site, also through the library, works flawlessly and I can access all their content.

 

Thankfully the current NY Times recipes are not what they were and it's no big loss.

 

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
12 hours ago, heidih said:

Why should a paper be free?  All those little boys even during hardest times running up and down the street hawking papers - we've been willing to pay in the hardest of times. Now we expect everthing free on the net...

 

Because times have changed. The large capital investment for facilities including buildings, presses, and trucks aren't necessary for electronic publications. In the past paid circulation was a major sales tool for advertising. Today there are reports of eyeballs on the screen - unique page views. Additionally data mining means a lot of specificity about readership - gender, age range, income, interests, etc. An advertiser doesn't pay to expose their ads to people outside their market.

 

There are things I do pay for on the 'net. There must be a good value proposition. The apps on my phone for Apple News and Google News give me free access to all the major news outlets. Why should I pay just to see it on a larger screen? What is the value for me?

 

The quality of writing and editing in the majors is down while political agendas shine through brightly. Why pay for that? Ads and content with intrusive technology such as autostart videos interrupt other things while I'm multi-tasking. Why pay for that? Let's not forget that not everyone has broadband and some of us (some always, some sometimes) pay by the bit or have data allocations. Pages laden with ads and Javascript already cost us data. Why pay for that?

 

11 hours ago, kayb said:

That's one reason I don't object to the all-access subscription, and think it's pretty smart for the NYC to split Cooking off in its subscription package for those who just want that, and little if anything else. As for recipes for a wedge salad or grilled cheese, well, there are a lot of other things in the site that are much more worthwhile. But I am not an accomplished enough cook but what I accept that perhaps someone might do something to either a wedge salad or a grilled cheese that I hadn't thought of (hell, I never thought of using fried green tomatoes on a BLT until I had one that way at a restaurant, and it's sheer genius, and I've been making BLTs for a half-century).  So, OK, include 'em. If my salad options are down to iceberg lettuce and dressing, I might look at the collection for ideas on how to jazz it up. YMMV.

 

A thoughtful post. I'll admit I piled on to the wedge salad and grilled cheese band wagon early in this thread. Sometimes the value in an article (at least about cooking) is not the recipe but perhaps a technique. For example if there is a way to cut a head of iceberg lettuce into six equal wedges without either a protractor for the 60° angles and to avoid the layers of lettuce disassembling I'd be interested in that. For a publisher who consistently provided that sort of information I *would* pay.

 

I could have elaborated on my grilled cheese recipe above to talk about WHY I toast one side of the bread in a dry skillet before assembling the sandwich and toasting the outsides while heating the cheese just to the melting point. Share a recipe and your audience has a recipe. Walk them through techniques using the recipe as an example or an exercise and some portion of the audience will really learn something. Give a man a fish or teach him to fish?

 

Which goes back to the value proposition. The NYT Cooking section lost value when they cancelled Harold McGee's column. What other missteps have they taken? How long can they coast (in Cooking and in general) based on a reputation they no longer live up to?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The value of some of the newspaper websites of out of whack. NYT is $132/yr and the deeply mediocre  Phila Inquirer is $156 /yr. ...and a good proportion of that is clickbait, opinion pieces from idiots,  and substandard crap. NYT at least is more substantial most of the time. 

 

Of course t he paywall can be defeated by having a browser that does not accept cookies....

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
17 hours ago, blue_dolphin said:

 

So it is your feeling that the archive should be curated in a way that wedge salad and grilled cheese recipes would either be free or culled from the site while more complex or innovative recipes might be deemed worthy of a subscription cost?  

Or do you have an objection to paying any fee to access the NYT recipe archives? 

 

the only time I see any recipe from NYT is when they send me an email usually entitled "What to cook this week"  It is  out of curiosity that I even look at any particular recipe.  When they send me a recipe title, then don't let me see the recipe, it feels like a bait and switch operation. Usually they are not blocked and I expect them to have original recipes, so I looked up Wedge Salad and Cheese Sandwich and a few others, because I thought:  What is so special about that? Then what is so secret about it? Then I really don't care to spend money to find out.


Edited by Norm Matthews (log)
  • Thanks 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, gfweb said:

The value of some of the newspaper websites of out of whack. NYT is $132/yr and the deeply mediocre  Phila Inquirer is $156 /yr. ...and a good proportion of that is clickbait, opinion pieces from idiots,  and substandard crap. NYT at least is more substantial most of the time.

My local daily charges $19.99/mo for a pure-digital subscription, less for a paper/digital (because then you see the print ads).

 

It's written primarily by new j-school grads, with a few seasoned "lifers" to give the paper a bit of much-needed substance (the food writer who succeeded me, one of the aforementioned j-school grads, spoke of a chef using one or another savory ingredient to add a bit of "Oooo, mommy!" to a dish). Its sole purpose is to generate enough ad revenue to meet its own expenses. It (and the dailies of the other two major cities in the province, and some 30 or so smaller weeklies and community papers around the province) is owned by the local oligarchs, the billionaire Irving family, who purchased them primarily as a prophylactic measure to prevent even the slightest risk of negative press.

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, Auspicious said:

 

Because times have changed. The large capital investment for facilities including buildings, presses, and trucks aren't necessary for electronic publications. In the past paid circulation was a major sales tool for advertising. Today there are reports of eyeballs on the screen - unique page views. Additionally data mining means a lot of specificity about readership - gender, age range, income, interests, etc. An advertiser doesn't pay to expose their ads to people outside their market.

 

There are things I do pay for on the 'net. There must be a good value proposition. The apps on my phone for Apple News and Google News give me free access to all the major news outlets. Why should I pay just to see it on a larger screen? What is the value for me?

 

The quality of writing and editing in the majors is down while political agendas shine through brightly. Why pay for that? Ads and content with intrusive technology such as autostart videos interrupt other things while I'm multi-tasking. Why pay for that? Let's not forget that not everyone has broadband and some of us (some always, some sometimes) pay by the bit or have data allocations. Pages laden with ads and Javascript already cost us data. Why pay for that?

 

 

A thoughtful post. I'll admit I piled on to the wedge salad and grilled cheese band wagon early in this thread. Sometimes the value in an article (at least about cooking) is not the recipe but perhaps a technique. For example if there is a way to cut a head of iceberg lettuce into six equal wedges without either a protractor for the 60° angles and to avoid the layers of lettuce disassembling I'd be interested in that. For a publisher who consistently provided that sort of information I *would* pay.

 

I could have elaborated on my grilled cheese recipe above to talk about WHY I toast one side of the bread in a dry skillet before assembling the sandwich and toasting the outsides while heating the cheese just to the melting point. Share a recipe and your audience has a recipe. Walk them through techniques using the recipe as an example or an exercise and some portion of the audience will really learn something. Give a man a fish or teach him to fish?

 

Which goes back to the value proposition. The NYT Cooking section lost value when they cancelled Harold McGee's column. What other missteps have they taken? How long can they coast (in Cooking and in general) based on a reputation they no longer live up to?

 

Why do you toast one side of the bread before building your sandwich?

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
1 hour ago, gfweb said:

 

 

Of course t he paywall can be defeated by having a browser that does not accept cookies....

 

Tell me more......

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)

I can't imagine the NYTimes culling simple Rx's from more complicated.

 

one takes it or leaves it.

 

I get home delivery of both the NYTimes and the WSJ

 

I like a physical paper in my hand.

 

it is expensive , I guess .

 

but I can't stand ' reading ' a newspaper on-line

 

Today's NYTimes has the food section.

 

there is an article I plan to take a peek at :

 

in LasVegas , Melissa Coppel teaches cooks how to create a perfect BonBon.

 

sounds like the eG thread on chocolate w that back room finish :

 

https://forums.egullet.org/topic/142035-chocolates-with-that-backroom-finish/?tab=comments#comment-1865198

 

it was on e.g. frist

 

maybe the NYTimes lurks here ?

 

one can also remove cookies manually from most browsers.

 

I don't know of a browser that automatically removes specific cookies when quoting thee browser

 

that would be a nifty trick !

 


Edited by rotuts (log)
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
27 minutes ago, ElsieD said:

 

Tell me more......

Get a second browser eg if you  use Firefox usually, get chrome. Set the chome to not accept any cookies. When you want to read the paywall-blocked paper use chrome to do it.

 

This only works if the paywalled paper gives you a few free reads a month. If its like WSJ, with no free reads, then this trick won't work.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Posted (edited)
31 minutes ago, ElsieD said:

 

Tell me more......

Many sites give you [x] free articles in a month. The site sets a cookie that contains a counter, which is how it keeps track. You can either go into your browser's cookie settings, search for anything related to the site (NYT, in this case) and manually delete them; or set your browser to reject cookies in the first place (what gfweb spoke of).

 

Of course some sites will simply not work or not work properly if you set the browser to reject cookies out of hand, so the more useful option is to set your browser to allow cookies at time of use, but then to ditch them rather than saving them (ie, "allow for this session"). The exact setting and where to find it will vary by browser.

 

In my case I have three computers I can use, so that's usually enough to see me through a given month without futzing around.

 

ETA: X-posted simultaneously with gfweb...

 


Edited by chromedome (log)
  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.

×