Late in January, Rupert Murdoch put an end to speculation that he would set free the Wall Street Journal's subscription-only Web site.
While he planned to "expand" the site's free offerings, "the really special things will still be a subscription service, and, sorry to tell you, probably more expensive," the News Corp. head told a crowd in Davos, Switzerland. The pay wall, in other words, would stay up.
But Murdoch, quel surprise, wasn't telling the whole truth: The Wall Street Journal's Web site already is free. Every article that the paper publishes is available to anyone, for no money at all.
By "every article," I mean all of them -- from the front, inside and back of the paper, from the lengthiest investigative features to the merest news nuggets. And by "free," I mean for not a single dime, and certainly not the site's $79 annual fee.