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Your Views on the Links Page Please!


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Hi Sim

 

As you know, various work-related issues mean that I haven't been getting onto the links page on a daily basis as much as I used to, but probably only 2-3 times during the week, and also I rarely go back to the current day's page any more from different machines, both of which will have contributed somewhat to the decline in links readership.  I certainly very much appreciate all the hard work the Links team put into it, and only wish the websites involved would be a little more realistic about what and when they decide to block: I certainly think that 8-10 visits a month is excessively low, and they must be losing a lot of readership because of it.  For example, I'm not really interested in the everyday articles the FT has, and am certainly not going to pay money to subscribe to it just to read the dance coverage.  If necessary, I'll go back to looking reviews up every few weeks when I'm in the library, but I hope it won't have to come to that.

 

Edit: For instance, I no longer access the Links when I'm working on my Chromebook, because I think it's implicated in this problem of all the links threads suddenly being marked as read that I've been having.  Previously, if there was any still-unread thread, I'd go back and make sure I'd read everything on it, e.g. catch up on the weekend offerings, but now if they've been marked as read I don't know what I'm still missing out on, and can't go back and read it, so that's a few more visits by me lost.

 

I look forward to hearing what others think.

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Thanks Alison....I wouldn't pay for any of them; if I had to pay I would rather support the printed press!

 

I check the links page here almost every day; there is always something that interests me despite being blocked from certain of the broadsheets and other publications.

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I am posting this on behalf of 'Tours en l'Air' who couldn't post it due to a technical issue:

 

 

I LOVE the links page and subscribe to the instant follow every week. Maybe recommend this to people, as then it pops up in your inbox rather than having to go look for it. HOWEVER, I did notice for a while earlier this month that the emails were going into spam, and I always get a message saying "This may not have been sent by balletcoforum", so perhaps other people are having the same problem (though I don't see many people using the instant follow option anyway) As for the FT etc., it's annoying, and seems to be more work for the links editors (bless 'em) to no avail to us, so if articles are behind a paywall I would just not bother posting them if I were you. But then I don't have the option of getting a hard copy here in Canada, which most of your subscribers would.

 

 

Katherine Barber

Tours en l'air Ballet Holidays

 

www.toursenlair.blogspot.ca

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Hello readers. We have recently been noticing problems with accessing certain reviews/articles on the daily links. For example The Times and The Australian ask readers to subscribe before they can access the online versions of the papers, and others such as the Financial Times give a monthly allocation of views after which a subscription request appears. We would be very interested to hear of any similar problems.

Speaking of our daily links section, we note that readership of this has declined recently. Would the above access difficulties have anything to do with this? Again, we would be interested in hearing your views about the links section, how often you look at it, how useful you find it, or any other comments you may have.

We look forward to hearing your views.

Many thanks,

Simonetta Dixon
Chair
BalletcoForum Committee

 

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I visit the links every day, sometimes several times, from home as well as from work (yes, I know, I know). There’s always something I find interesting, from rewiews to features.  Dance is an awfully neglected issue in the papers here, so I am very glad I can find useful information as well as substancial thoughts about it.

 

And of course I would like to use this opportunity to express my thanks to the staff who provides it! 

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Hello readers. We have recently been noticing problems with accessing certain reviews/articles on the daily links. For example The Times and The Australian ask readers to subscribe before they can access the online versions of the papers, and others such as the Financial Times give a monthly allocation of views after which a subscription request appears. We would be very interested to hear of any similar problems.

 

Speaking of our daily links section, we note that readership of this has declined recently. Would the above access difficulties have anything to do with this? Again, we would be interested in hearing your views about the links section, how often you look at it, how useful you find it, or any other comments you may have.

 

We look forward to hearing your views.

 

Many thanks,

 

Simonetta Dixon

Chair

BalletcoForum Committee

I too visit the links section every day and always find something of interest, particularly when there are multiple reviews of the same performance/same cast.  Yes, it is true that I can no longer access certain reviews without being asked to subscribe and I am most certainly not going to be coerced into doing that.  The one I miss most is Arts Desk.  Sometimes I can access the reviews, sometimes not, not sure why.  I very much appreciate the work that the links people put into this and amazed at the scope of the links they find.  Maybe people express their views and read the views of others more through social media these days?  I don't know as I don't subscribe to social media but I can only say that I have never found the tweets which appear across the screen at live transmissions very profound or helpful!  Please keep on providing the links 

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I really appreciate the Links section. Usually, I can access the Telegraph, FT and Arts Desk reviews but sometimes I can't. I look at the Links section almost every day. Many thanks to the members who painstakingly source and post links to the reviews and articles from all over the world and from such a wide variety of publications.

Edited by aileen
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Please keep on providing the links 

 

 

We will, we will!

 

Sometimes one can view inaccessible articles indirectly by googling their titles.

 

There is a gradual drift away from print media towards online-only (Arts Desk, DanceTabs etc) but this is fine given that most of the online-only journalism we reference is of high standard. Presumably that trend will continue as too will the trend to 'monetize' websites by imposing subscriptions.

 

Before the internet we all expected to pay for information by buying newspapers or (in the UK) paying a television license fee. Internet users have been fortunate and spoilt until fairly recently by getting access to lots of free content from all over. Of course, it may be free to the user, but it's not free to the provider. Ultimately someone is paying for the website and its infrastructure and at some point is likely to want their money back.

 

However this is all rather beside the point…!

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I would like to echo the thanks offered by others to those who provide the Links for us on a daily basis. I find it fascinating just to survey the coverage, even if I do not read it all, as it broadens my awareness of what the world of dance contains. It is frustrating, I agree, that certain articles are inaccessible without a subscription; but, at least, thanks to this forum, we know that they exist and can try to source them in other ways if the subject matter is important to us.

Edited by capybara
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The Links is the first thing I look at when using the Forum.  I like to find out who has photographed the various productions around the world.  I have familiarised myself with the picture takers in the USA, Australia and others.  Many thanks to the Links team.

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I visit the links page every day and love the way it is organised.  While it may be frustrating, please continue to post all links even those behind a paywall - I make a note of these and access them via the library later.  I know how much work is involved in curating these links and it is much appreciated.  Many thanks to all involved.

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Not sure if it's just for overseas readers, but The Independent only allows a handful of views per month before expecting people to pay. As far as I know, the Guardian and the Telegraph are the only broadsheets that are still free to look at without limit.

 

The New York Times has some sort of limit too but I mostly just read the archive there, so I don't know if the limit applies to new posts.

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I read the links every day and I really appreciate the effort put in to make them available to us.  What I do miss is the facility to comment or add to them as we had on the old site.

 

Re subscriptions,  I used to think the digital sub for the Times was quite reasonable at under £9 a month - much cheaper than the print version.  But now it's going up to £6 per week, a huge increase and one I think many will find excessive.  It's possible to negotiate a discount for a few months if you're already a subscriber and I'm told that there will be new packages available in December but I am still wondering if it is really worth it.

 

As for tweets - well you can't give much useful information or profound comment in such a sparse allowance of text so it can't ever replace the sort of detailed review I want to read.

 

All I can say is please keep up the good work!

 

Linda

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What I do miss is the facility to comment or add to them as we had on the old site.

 

 

I take your point, but after Ian MacMillan rescued the links service from the brink of oblivion and it had settled in a bit we decided to make it read-only for the sake of tidiness and ease of reading with the thought that where people had comments on reviews or other features it would be very easy to make them in a new or existing thread in one of the other forums.

 

We do have a Twitter account (@BalletcoForum) which we use to advertise the day's links and to point up some of them, but it's difficult to know whether that's useful and how many people take note and come here.

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I don't always read the links first thing, but I scour the section for any production I have seen (or wished I had seen) - it's an amazing resource to have. I don't think it's a problem that some of the sources have limited numbers of view.

 

I ended up signing up to the artsdesk due to the links page since I liked their way of reviewing across a number of subjects and blew through their limit pretty quickly. Wish some papers had a reduced price option to only get access to the sections on interest - I don't want the football or business news, but happily pay a smallish price for the arts reviews

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I, too, feel privileged to be able to read the Links section daily.  (Indeed my day - no matter how busy it may otherwise be - would feel incomplete were I not able to do so.  A 'guilty' pleasure on occasion it has certainly been ... but as far as I'm concerned it is one well worth the investment of time whenever or wherever I may find myself.  (I remember delaying a conference call from a hotel room in Beijing simply because I wanted a few more minutes (to myself) to read (what I considered to be) an essential article.  That it was for my own personal good ONLY did (or so I like to think) lead to an easier and more direct focus when I undertook the task at hand immediately thereafter.   I am sure we are all DEEPLY appreciative for the efforts of those who serve so nobly.  (I certainly have noted this a number of times previously on this Board.)  Bless you.  

 

I, too, have subscribed to ArtsDesk, much as 'Coated'.  I agree it would be grand if that particular subscription (indeed all) could be codified in some manner as per specific interest (e.g.,Arts) ... [and I have a feeling that may well come to pass in the fullness of time - much as it has in other areas] .... but I am happy to support ArtsDesk specifically knowing that all writers - much like those at the HUGELY VALUED Dancetabs - are dedicated [and extremely knowledgeable] volunteers in the true spirit of the word.   

 

As towards The (various) Times to which I do not subscribe (either London - or when my limit has slipped past the New York allowance):  On those occasions when there is an article of particular interest as identified in the BcoF Links section (the interview with the stunning Francesa Hayward for recent instance) I do find myself dropping into the Royal Society of Arts (RSA) where for my sins I have been made a Fellow for a touch of old fashioned 'hard copy'.  I make sad use of that privilege [i.e., the Fellowship] otherwise - truth to be told - and on those rare occasions when I DO find myself in their Library or assorted coffee rooms (with paper racks) please know I give hearty thanks to the BcoF links page for their encouragement/inspiration in this additional regard.  Again, thank you.

 

I think part of the reason there may have been a recent dip in readership on the BcoF Links page could well be attributed to the fact that these Autumn months mark a revving up of curriculum in so many different regards.  I'm sure it will be but a blip.  Certainly it deserves to be.  The BcoF Links page is, without hesitation, an EXCELLENT service; a gold-standard in its own lights.

Edited by Bruce Wall
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Like many others, the links section is the first one I look at and read and enjoy, so many thanks to all of you for the time you take to set it up each day.  I often find items of interest that I would not have seen without these links.

 

Thanks to all the team for an excellent service.

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Like many others, the links section is the first one I look at and read and enjoy, so many thanks to all of you for the time you take to set it up each day.  I often find items of interest that I would not have seen without these links.

 

Thanks to all the team for an excellent service.

 

My thoughts exactly.  Thank you!

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Like ao many others, I read the Links every day, snd am full of wonder at the thoroughness of the Moderators.  I love the quirky oddments you come up with at the end - what I alswys think of as the 'Skateboarding Ducks' section.  I would miss the coverage greatly.  I am subscribed to Arts Desk too, but not to any of the newspapers. 

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I too read the links section every day and would be lost without it.  Not only that, I print out some of the reviews to send to a friend who has no Internet access.  Not sure if this is actually legal, but it's no different from sending a newsprint cutting, is it?  As others have said, it is frustrating to find some of the reviews tucked away behind a subscription wall - and in some cases I know that I have not exceeded any limit imposed on the few free articles allowed per month.

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Well, many thanks to all who have responded on this thread, and the consensus would appear to be that the service is most welcome and that most of you are working with (or around) the various access 'issues' that can now be found.  My suspicion is that the latter may well seem more of a nuisance to those of us carrying out the daily trawl than to most others.  And on behalf of the team trio may I also say a Thank You for the kind words of appreciation written by so many.

 

The team would, of course, be happy to welcome anyone who felt they might be able to help share the load by joining us.  The task isn't particularly difficult, though it does require some time during the mornings on duty.  Training and help is available, and extra hands would help ensure that the service continues into the foreseeable future.  Should you - yes, you - want to explore this further, please contact me using the Forum's PM system.

 

With thanks in advance, Ian Macmillan.

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