CLARIFICATION: Jim Kennedy, AP Vice President for Strategic Planning, posted this comment:
I'm a great fan of Shore, but this post needs clarification. The "destination" portal you think you landed on is actually nothing of the sort.
Since 1996, AP has hosted general news pages for many of its subscribing members. The pages are generally branded for each member and carry each member's look and feel.
In this case, you found your way to an unbranded page, which we use for in-house and demo purposes.
No change in strategy here. We're not interested in creating a destination. We are doing just fine as a B2B supplier.
Thanks for the information, Jim, I understood this to be a service for AP members but I don't think that this came through clearly enough in the original post. I think that what happened is that one of your partners was using the hosted service with a frame and not a "skin", so it was easy to pop the article out of the frame and to see the hosted site in its demo form. I see this not as a budding strategy from AP but an interesting example of what AP could have done but did not do as a result of its positioning as a membership-driven syndication service.