Brunswick News has put up a paywall, but all you need to access local news is your library card.
At the end of last year Brunswick News Inc. relaunched the website for its newspapers and moved all of their content behind a paywall at www.telegraphjournal.com. This means that in order to access a story from the Telegraph-Journal or the Times-Transcript, you have to pay three dollars a month for an online subscription even if you already subscribe to the physical edition one or more of these papers.
While the new site is nicely laid out, and has a few nice features, such as allowing users to download high quality copies of the paper, any improvements are offset by the site’s paywall restricting new Brunswickers’ access to local and regional news.
While the paywall may increase traffic to CBC NB or the NB Media Co-op, it is a backwards move for the company. You can comment on the stories inside the site, but because of the paywall there is no way to share them on social media sites or blogs. You can’t even email the story to a friend without copying and pasting the content into an email. This severely limits the spread of Brunswick News Inc stories online and shows that the company is focused on their physical papers and in driving people to subscribe to them.
However, if you need to get access to a Canadaeast story, there is still a free option: your local public library.
The New Brunswick Public library subscribes to an electronic service called Canadian Newsstand. If you have a library card, accessing this service is simple, but requires a few steps:
- Start by going to www.gnb.ca/publiclibraries
- Click “Electronic Resources” from the top menu bar.
- Enter your library card in the field on the next page.
- Choose Proquest’s “Canadian Newsstand”. It’s the first resource on the page.
- You are now on Proquest’s site. Click the “search” link beside “Canadian Newsstand Atlantic”.
- From here you can search through all of the Atlantic Canadian papers, but you can also go to a particular paper by clicking “Publications”.
- You will see a list of the different newspapers, including all of Brunswick New that you can choose from.
At this point you’ve arrived at the paper that you are interested in and can search just that paper, view the most recent issue, or under “Browse specific issues” you can select a year and month to view a particular issue going back to 1998. You can also have the option to email the story to others. If you look at a particular issue, the stories will be arranged in the order that they appeared in the paper. The ProQuest interface is rather plain– there are no images –but it’s functional, and unless Brunswick News Inc. decides to change its policy, it’s the only free way to access a large portion of our local news.
Andrew Lockhart is currently a library and information science student at the University of Western Ontario.