I’ve written about the iPad and it’s likely negative business change a few times. Now it’s official. Unless you own one, the iPad is going to make your life difficult.

I don’t know which of the following two problems is worse, but either way the world’s thus-far-ultimate media consumption device is taking things in a bad direction. Congratulations, Steve Jobs; you may actually become the God you seem to believe your chairmanship of Apple entitles you to be:

  1. Buy an iPad. Surf to the Wall Street Journal Web Site, Log in using your paid-for account. Get rejected; you can only read WSJ on an iPad if you use the iPad App, which costs extra even for existing on-line subscribers.
  2. Go to Time Magazine’s Web Site. Click on a link. Start reading the article. Find out that you can’t read Time Magazine online unless you use an iPad. Period.

Here’s what I found this morning at this link: (note that several months later the entire article has become available at the Time web site, so the picture below will need to be “proof” of what was said in July 2010 about Time Magazine and their iPad-only position)

Time Magazine is iPad-Only

That’s right. Time magazine has a web site. You can get to it using any computer. But you can only use the Time Magazine web site once you get there if you get there using an iPad.

Steve Jobs is paying off the world to do things that work for him, and screw everybody else.

As a business guy, I admire that Apple and Steve Jobs have this power and have figured out how to use it. As someone who sees less and less reason to kill trees to read magazines but doesn’t want an iPad, I’m crazy angry.

This is business change, but it’s not the kind Time Magazine should be practicing. I don’t get to see Rupert Murdoch as the lesser of evils too often, but today I’m happy to play things the way Mr. Murdoch’s News Corporation sees things.

Tell Time Magazine that this just isn’t OK.

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