Website registration coming to

Starting Aug. 4, readers of will be required to fill out a very short registration form in order to access the website.

This was a decision that has been a couple of years in the making. The fact is, we don't know much about the people who visit the website. In order to serve our readers better, we need to know at least a little about who they are.

For our print edition, we know the names, addresses, phone numbers and other info of all our subscribers, which gives us a very good idea of who our readers are.

We are going to ask for much less information from our online readers. The only questions we are asking are your zip code and area code, year you were born, gender and your email address.

In the spam-filled world in which we live, it's that last requirement that causes some concern. But be assured, we don't want the spam any more than you do (we have to sign up to see the site, also) and we will absolutely not give this out to anyone, period.

Once you sign up, you shouldn't see the registration form again, unless you change browsers or computers, or you delete you browser cookies.

Actually, you should not see this registration form the first couple of times you visit after we launch registration on Aug. 4. We have set it up so that someone who visits the site once or twice a month can still do so without signing up. We did this because we sometimes have stories which attract interest from far away, and forcing these one-time visitors to sign up isn't necessary. We are much more interested in who our regular readers are, and how we can best serve their interests.

If you have any questions, comments or feedback about this, please let us know. We are putting together a FAQ list to answer questions about this change. Send your responses to

Thanks for your cooperation.

UPDATE: There is one more question asked on the registration form that I forgot to inlcude. It will be a check box for whether you subscribe to the print edition.


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