Nope, but as an advertising-supported site, NYTimes.com does have to provide demographic info to its advertisers. I greatly prefer ad-supported news outlets to paid subscription-based or pay-per-article sites, and don't mind providing some info to keep the content free. My hometown newspaper has gone to a fee-per-article after 7 days. It's a real pain.
If providing demographic info bothers people, they should use free e-mail addresses not associated with their name.
<added>Oops, sorry to contribute to the hijacking of this thread. Congrats to Brett on the well-deserved PR. And Mark, this is a great place to hang out to learn how to promote your site and deal with issues like balky web hosts.</added>