Interesting times these! While the New York Times is poised to stop charging online users, Google is going to start charging.

New York Times started charging for access in 2005 and has in 2007 decided to abandon the approach. Google started offering free email, albeit restricted to 1 gigabyte (GB) storage, in 2004 and has in 2007 decided to start charging for storage over 2.8 gigabytes (GB) .

New York Post Story:

While other online publications were abandoning subscriptions, the Times took the opposite approach in 2005 and began charging for access to well-known writers, including Maureen Dowd, Frank Rich and Thomas L. Friedman… The number of Web-only subscribers who pay $7.95 a month or $49.95 a year fell to just over 221,000 in June, down from more than 224,000 in April.

…After much internal debate, Times executives - including publisher Arthur Sulzberger Jr. - made the decision to end the subscription-only TimesSelect service…. Read more at New York Post

Mint Story:

Google has different slabs—$20 or about Rs814 for 6GB space to $50 for 250GB additional spaces that will be integrated with its other services such as Picasa, the web-based photo album that can be shared among a community. The memory will be dynamically shared between the user’s Gmail and Picassa accounts. Picasa users have a storage limit of 1GB now… Read more at Mint

First published on August 17, 2007