Noodling Google's impact
Google's battle with the Italian Federation of Newspaper Editors is really over a bigger question than whether a newspaper can opt out of Google News but not Google searches.
GOOGLE informs us our statement Monday that a newspaper cannot exempt itself from Google News without cutting itself off from Google searches is incorrect. A newspaper cannot do this on its own, but if it calls Google, the thing can be arranged.
That is nice to know. Whether this will satisfy the Italian Federation of Newspaper Editors, who have complained to their government about Google, we doubt.
No newspaper's aim is to be cut off. A newspaper wants to be read, and it also wants to be paid for its work. What Google and the other search companies have done is create a way to take the newspapers' work without payment and offer it in a new form.
When criticized for appropriating the work of others for its shelf, Google notes that Google News has only headlines and the first few lines of a story. To read the whole story, the reader has to click through to the newspaper, and then the traffic is the newspaper's.
It sounds all so very fair. Google provides the bun and the newspaper provides the meat. But the result is that most of the money goes for the bun and not the meat. The bun people prosper and the meat people don't.
Copyright © The Seattle Times Company
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