In this article, Jim Lynch is going a bit far when trying to assess the effet of the new “Reader” feature of Safari 5, which I touched on in a previous post:

Apple has essentially destroyed the web publishing model completely with the release of Safari 5

Okay, that’s pushing it a bit far.

The first problem with this assessment is that Safari 5′s market share is ridiculously small.

The second problem is that the capabilities offered by Safari 5′s Reader are not new.

First, there’s Arc 90′s Readability, which is what Safari’s feature is based on. This bookmarklet works in most browsers and it has been available for a few months now.

What Readability doesn’t allow is displaying a multi-page article in one page, but as it turns out, there is a trick I’ve been using for several years with a lot of success: look for a “Print” button.

Let me illustrate on the very article I’m quoting. As you can see, it’s pretty overloaded with annoying stuff, starting with the silly background and the ego gadgets at the bottom:

This article is spread over three pages, but hey, look! A “Print” button! Let’s click it:

Tada! The entire article on one convenient page and no more ads nor distractions. And a bonus: no more Tynt either!

You don’t know what Tynt is? It’s a service that monitors your copy/pastes and rewrites them before handing them back to you. For example, if you copy a section of the original article, the text you get when you paste is:

Why are multi-page articles so important? Many web publishers get paid based on the number of ad impressions they generate

Read more:

As you can imagine, I never expected the “Read more” section to be part of my selection and the unique key code at the end of the link helpfully reminds you that Tynt is tracking your every pastes. Tynt is extremely annoying and unfortunately, I see it being used more and more.

The “Print” trick I described above will take care of Tynt as well (as will “Readability”) and once you get into the habit, you will no longer accept to read a multi page article without it.