They probably did this ages ago, but I use RSS so extensively that I often never see the front page of news web sites.
In any event, I love the way the Globe and Mail is using black & white for their left-hand-side thumbnails.
Most news sites, in fact almost all news sites, have become horrible to look at. Part of the problem is that no matter how the site gets designed, as soon as you add all those ads, colour schemes and balance go out the window (no pun intended).
Using the monochrome images really eases the busy-ness of the site, and I think it’s a great move.