Play with them for a while, and let us know what you think.
My view is that these are nice first instantiations of where all traditional publishers will move.
(Sidebar; ironically, 'traditional' now means an online content provider whose site has been around for a while. We're not even talkin' print media much anymore. As my 12 year-old said when I brought home a print copy of the New York Times the other day, "I didn't even know they *had* an offline version!")
I've had a number of interviews and customer calls lately centering around a question I'll call Brand 2.0. How do I take my online brand to the next level using (pick among) social media/citizen media/RSS/tagging/memetracking/etc?
(Sidebar 2 -- lots of interest in this from associations and enterprises that want more interactivity with their members and customers, too -- not just media...)
In addition to unbundling and rebundling of content, media companies face a choice: do they want to remain product businesses or do they want to become audience relationship businesses?
Hmm, too bizgeekspeak...
For example, SF Gate is using NewsGator's editorial tools to have their editors create feeds comprised of content from all over, including the long tail. Since I trust the Chronicle's editors and writers, I'm highly likely to vote to subscribe to a feed where they've done the sorting work for me. Plus, there's a very useful editorially-chosen taxonomy of RSS content from all over ... they've done the hard work for me of finding the best stuff on food & wine, local entertainment, etc etc (click on thumbnails for full view):
(Third sidebar; I'll bet anyone who votes to subscribe online is as valuable over time as folks who voted to subscribe in print. Perhaps less lifetime revenue per online subscriber, but much higher CPM (publisher knows much more about them), and much lower per-sub distribution costs...)
Both the SF Gate and Newsweek readers allow me to start rolling-my-own medium.
As I've worked extensively with the myfeeds reader on SF Gate, for example, I've developed an entirely different view into the online paper than I had before. I've discovered content I didn't know existed, and organized the things that matter to me from all over the paper and elsewhere in a way where I now have a place to go that is personal, relevant, and, interestingly, possesses a very unique editorial voice. Myfeeds' voice is more irreverent and always current, because myfeeds feature, for example, all my favorite columnists' feeds; this way cool culture blog; and some of the rolled feeds (can't beat their editors' choice of weird news, for example) from their editors;
I read more often, and much more SF Gate content than I used to, and don't mind the ads a bit...
Same story at mynewsweek; their editorially-chosen Enterprise feed is a very nice business snapshot whose stories I now read regularly; prior to this I didn't think of them as a primary source for my business news;
Implementations are different; SF Gate has registration, Newsweek does not (so my experience is a bit more valuable to SF Gate than to Newsweek, as the former knows a bit more about me...)
There's much more that will be done, of course (and much more we're doing -- stay tuned for some big announcements very soon). Some hints; more mash-ups of meta-content from the long tail; more portals into the cool meta-content from more places; more ways to read beyond the site itself...
In the interim, I'm a heck of a lot more valuable reader to SF Gate and Newsweek today than I was a couple of weeks ago...