Saturday, July 30, 2016

Going around pesky periodical paywalls by using databases from your friendly local public library

One irritation when doing web research is finding that a site like a newspaper or magazine that once  offered free access now has put up a paywall. What can you do? After all, aren’t you just a poor, helpless, lone consumer?

Of course not! You are a taxpayer, and your state taxes paid for a library system that bulk purchased a whole set of databases. That makes you part of a powerful group. One or more databases likely has that pesky periodical. Instead of being shut out at the front gate for that paywall, just get out your library card and use it as the key to open up a side gate via your city or county public library web site. If you want or need even more, try visiting the library at a state university.  

Back on February 24, 2015 I blogged about How to do an better job of speech research than the average Toastmaster (by using your friendly local public and state university libraries).

At her Law and More blog on July 16th (Mary) Jane Genova posted  briefly on the topic of Catching up with fun parts of the law w/o paywalls. She said:

“....But with the growing number of paywalls, there are fewer free sites to browse., WSJ Law Blog, Bloomberg Law, The New York Times, and The Washington Post all have put up those toll gates. Some of those, such as The Times, allow a certain amount of freebies a month.”

I was surprised to see that she didn’t mention using public and state university libraries, or to also post that article on her other Speechwriter-Ghostwriter blog. In her town of Tucson the Pima County Public Library has InfoTrac Newsstand, which reportedly carries the last decade of The New York Times. 

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