More and more magazines and newspapers are providing excerpts from their current and past issues online

and some magazines provide additional content related to the current issue which isn't in the print version. (Clever--when you buy the print version and find out there's more at the Web site, you have to go there, and then you get zapped with the advertising banners!) Ok, there's a pattern here. The commercial sites will post information that they think will enhance their online or real world business, build their public relations goodwill, or will draw people to the Web site where they can either make money from advertising or deliver another sales pitch for a product. It's usually pretty interesting stuff, because it's meant to be, and some of it can be useful to a researcher.

It's actually pretty amazing to see some of the huge commercial databases such as phone directories, yellow pages, business locators (complete with door to door directions), stock tickers, and news update services which are available free on the Web. Only time will tell if the companies providing those services feel they are getting enough "bang for the buck" to keep going--no one knows for sure if anybody is making a profit on the Web or getting enough PR value for what they're spending.

There's also a growing list of free e-zines and e-journals, which are published only online, and many of these have excellent information for research.

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