The Daily….iPad not required?

Posted on February 5, 2011



Having followed the buzz surrounding The Daily—Rupert Murdoch’s daily news app released just two days ago—I felt a little out of the loop. It is, after all, the first publication to cater exclusively to those with iPads. As someone who happily does not own an iPad (I just bought my first smart phone a few months ago and while I love it, it’s about all I can handle at the moment) I was intrigued to stumble upon a bit titled “Want to Read The Daily? No iPad? No Problem” on the New York Times website.

Andy Baio, a programmer/journalist out of Los Angeles, California created after a friend pointed out that articles from the iPad application were being shared via social mediums (like facebook) and were accessible to people not using an iPad. Baio’s site is essentially an archive of sorts, and simply organizes the already available content onto one convenient page. In his blog, Baio wrote “The Daily’s publishing free, Web-based versions to every article, but without an index, it’s very inconvenient to find or link to individual articles from the Web.”

It is unclear whether The Daily will reach out to Baio and ask him to remove the sight, but if they do Baio says he will comply. When Jesse Angelo, the editor-in-chief of the publication, spoke at Wednesday’s press conference he stated that content would be shareable online. When Murdoch was asked whether a free version of The Daily would ever be available online, he said “No.”

I was eager to see whether or not the Baio’s site would still be up—I read the NYT bit a day after it was posted—and it was.

I think it would be silly for The Daily to shut down the site because their content will get more traffic if it is not limited to those with iPads. I suppose it could be argued that the whole premise behind The Daily is that it’s exclusively for those with Apple’s tablet device, but if they’re already publishing web versions of every article, they might as well have just set up a main page. I also think if I had an iPad and subscribed to The Daily but then could not go back and view past editions of  what I had paid for, I would be frustrated; perhaps those working at The Daily will weigh this aspect as they decide how to respond to the site.

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