OUTRAGE IN … AND OVER … BEIJING
As reported in today’s Friday Morning Blast, AP chief exec Tom Curley and News Corp boss Rupert Murdoch stepped up their anti-search engine rhetoric, in statements at the World Media Summit in Beijing.
“Aggregators and plagiarists” are “kelptomaniacs,” Murdoch said. Curley said “content creators must quickly and decisively act to take back control of our content.”
There’s been a flash flood of reaction.
Newsweek’s Techtonic Shifts blogger headlines: “Rupert Murdoch Says Google Is Stealing His Content. So Why Doesn’t He Stop Them?”
Here’s why: “Curely’s and Murdoch’s macho outrage is calculated to be quotable, but it is fake,” Newsweek blogger Weston Kosova opines.
“They say Google is making tons of money by shamelessly lifting their content, and it’s driving newspapers out of business … Of course, that’s not even close to true…
“Murdoch and Curley know this. How do we know they know? Because if they really thought Google was stealing from them, and if they really wanted Google to stop driving all those readers to their websites at no charge, they would simply stop Google from linking to their news stories.
“Google doesn’t force websites to be included in their search listings. The people who run any website can remove the site from Google’s results with a few key strokes…
“It’s not like this is some big secret. Google even has a page on its Website explaining step by step how to do it. Yet neither AP nor News Corp has taken this simple step to stop the marauding Google pirates from pillaging their cargo.
“Why? Because they know that their traffic would dry up overnight. They’d rather blame someone else for their failure to compete in a changing marketplace. They happily take all the customers Google sends them for free, and then accuse Google of theft. Classy.
“Perhaps I’m wrong, and Curley and Murdoch really didn’t know that they had the power all along to rid themselves of the Google scourge any time they wanted to. If that’s so, they know now.
“So go right ahead, Gentlemen. Stop the thievery. Pull the plug on Google right now. I double dog dare you.”
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NATIONAL NEWSPAPER WEEK: It’s a public relations fiasco. (See Newsosaur link in today’s Friday Noon Update.) [Mother Nature Network] ALSO: If the Internet came first, we’d invent newspapers. [Kalamazoo Gazette]
BBC ACTS ON BIAS: Under attack for bias in its Middle East coverage, the BBC has asked for public comment on proposed impartiality guidelines. [Editors Weblog]
FREE SPEECHERS IN CANADA: An editorial bemoans the loss of free speech rights and Mark Steyn and Ezra Levant testify (video link) before Parliament in opposition to a bad law “corrupted and diseased beyond salvation.” [Calgary Herald, AM 770]
USA TODAY CRASHES: Circulation down 17 percent. [Editor & Publisher]
AN UNUSUAL NEWSPAPER COMMERCIAL: From France: