Say it ain't so! MedGadget reports that the American Medical Association will no longer be letting the public view its online newsletter, AM News, for free; it will only be available free to AMA members (more on the new policy here) . A snip from MedGadget:
To find out why the decision was made, our very own Dr.O, member of the
AMA, contacted Linda Smith, a senior service representative in the
Department of Member Relations of the AMA. During the prolonged
discussion, Mrs. Smith informed Dr.O that AMNews will now be
available for $30 for a 24 hour period. When asked to name an online
publication by the AMA, free for the public, that covers public health
policies issues, she has referred to the main AMA website. When noted
that the main byline of "The Newspaper for America's Physicians" was no
longer applicable (i.e. for members only), she said that the newspaper
will still be available free to non-AMA members, but only six months
after the original publication. Finally, when asked if the PDA edition
through AvantGo.com (currently the exact copy of entire online edition)
will still be available free of charge, she had no answer.
This is a terrible idea--much worse than the New York Times deciding to charge for online access to editorials and archives. If you agree, join me in letting them know your objections through their feedback form.