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2005/06/24 BugMeNot (that'll teach 'em!)

Too many websites now have mandatory registration. It's particularly annoying when you really have no interest in the site but just want to read one article referenced by Google.

Frankly, I wish Google, Yahoo, etc. wouldn't even index these sites. They deserve insignificance for their irritating registration requirements. Ultimately, I expect these will go the way of the Dodo, but in the meantime Bug Me Not has a solution. People submit fake registrations by using services like mailinator, spamgourmet or spambob. The login info is then listed on Bug Me Not's site, allowing you to login. If there is no working login, you are asked to create one and share it.

Ethical? Well, some say no, but I have no problem with this at all. If a site asks me to provide voluntary information, I might do it, but I don't like arm twisting. And I don't want to be pestered by their marketing department anyway.

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© Tony Lawrence

Fri Jun 24 08:38:40 2005: 690   Phil

Bug Me Not is one of the URIs listed in Rixstep's useful extension to the OS X Services Menu (a descendant of NeXTSTEP Services). OS X users with this can simply highlight the offending address and send it to Bug Me Not via the Services Menu:


Fri Jun 24 12:01:24 2005: 695   anonymous

Well, no-one's twisting your arm anyway.

I too am often annoyed by registration-only sites, but I think one should keep in mind that they're providing content that's both free and interesting.

Fri Jun 24 12:32:52 2005: 696   dhart

I don't often log into registration-only sites, but is it your perception that such sites are better (by any measure...) than sites unencumbered by registration?

Fri Jun 24 14:41:18 2005: 701   BigDumbDinosaur

I too am often annoyed by registration-only sites, but I think one should keep in mind that they're providing content that's both free and interesting.

It's not "free" if by forcing you to register to see their content they extract information from you that can later be used to send spam. It's costing you time -- and time is never "free."

Fri Jun 24 15:01:25 2005: 703   TonyLawrence

No, I don't think the NYT (for example) is better - in fact it's probably less valuable in many respects. I use (link) and customize it to the things I'm most interested in.

Fri Jun 24 22:31:08 2005: 711   diemer

i use bugmenot pretty frequently, and ethics aside, it's a pretty invaluble and time saving tool. no one likes to dig thru emails to find a lousy username.

Fri Jun 24 22:35:50 2005: 712   TonyLawrence

A comment above says "no one is twisting your arm".

True. Though because thsse sites apparently allow search engines to index their content, I feel that they are in effect lying: the search engine thinks the content can be read, so it provides the site in your search results. That's a sort of false advertising.

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