Farewell Politics Home, another superb free service which is no longer available - except as an extremely limited service - unless you pay for it.
I've mentioned politicshome.com before, calling it "one of my favourite sites". It's a politics news aggregator which manually recommends the best reports on the top political stories of the day as well as comment pieces, blogs and Twitter postings. It also includes a calendar of upcoming events and a précis of the most interesting broadcast interviews.
When I say manually, that means people are employed to monitor news sources and use their judgment to put Politics Home together. It costs money.
As I understand it (based on a brief conversation with someone who used to work there), the plan originally was to provide a free service but use the site to sell paid-for services, such as polling and research.
Now, however, the site has changed to provide only a limited free service, with the full monty available only to those who pay fees of £19 a month, for the "lite" service, or £95 a month for "pro".
I wrote on Twitter today: "www.politicshome.com is now useless to anyone not paying at least £19.95 a month - was a great site, I guess "free" doesn't always work"
On reflection, "useless" is too harsh. It's still worth checking out, but it's no longer the valuable resource it once was.
As I said earlier, in a post about Sprout, the moral of the story, it seems to me, is that nothing that's "free" should be considered reliable. Most things have to be paid for somehow, even if they are not directly funded by the end user.