Of course, if The New York Times and other papers don’t want their reporters paying for news, that’s fine. It means that the competitive advantage (for some stories, at least), will continue to go to the outlets that do pay. But it’s hard to argue that papers that abstain from payments are morally or professionally superior to those that do, when the latter are catching important stories that might otherwise go untold. 

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John Cook is a reporter for Gawker.