> Did PC Plus actually give a reason for this decision?
They told me the reason was financial. To be fair to them, their stats tell them exactly how many people view the Group Efforts pages each month, and if it's not enough (I don't know the figures, so I'm speculating), then it isn't worth their while paying me - er, Bernard - to write it.
This makes me wish all the more that there was a widely supported micro-billing infrastructure for the Web, which would let me sell Group Efforts episodes from my own site at, say, 30p a read. All it takes is someone selling the equivalent of pay-as-you-talk phone vouchers, which credited online accounts which my site could then bill against.
I've been waiting for this for ages (see PC Plus columns passim), and I think it would create an absolute explosion of small-value, high-volume transactions, and small websites offering information services.
If the willigness of my daughter (aged 15) and her mates to bill 10p text messages against their phone vouchers are anything to go by, there'd be no problem with customer resistance to the idea.