MEDIA: Rupert Murdoch Vs. The Internets


THE GUARDIAN: Rupert Murdoch says he will remove stories from Google’s search index as a way to encourage people to pay for content online. In an interview with Sky News Australia, the mogul said that newspapers in his media empire – including the Sun, the Times and the Wall Street Journal – would consider blocking Google entirely once they had enacted plans to charge people for reading their stories on the web. In recent months, Murdoch his lieutenants have stepped up their war of words with Google, accusing it of “kleptomania” and acting as a “parasite” for including News Corp content in its Google News pages. But asked why News Corp executives had not chosen to simply remove their websites entirely from Google’s search indexes – a simple technical operation – Murdoch said just such a move was on the cards. “I think we will, but that’s when we start charging,” he said. Murdoch added that he did not agree with the idea that search engines fell under “fair use” rules – an argument many aggregator websites use as part of their legal murdochasmonopolyman.jpgjustification for reproducing excerpts of news stories online. “There’s a doctrine called fair use, which we believe to be challenged in the courts and would bar it altogether… but we’ll take that slowly.” MORE

WIRED:  Rupert Murdoch has made this kind of noise before (and he gets wrong the extent of actual public access to Wall Street Journal content online, which is 100%). But in an interview with Sky News the News Corp chairman sounds a lot like he would be inclined to take up Google on its oft-repeated suggestion — to all old media titans who think they are being ripped off — to programatically withhold content from the search giant’s massive gene pool of news links. We all know that these are uncertain times for traditional publishers. Newspaper circulation is cratering; the latest numbers show it down another 10% in the last year, and Murdoch’s own New York Post is down nearly 30% in the past 2-1/2 years. Many newspaper executives grumble that the internet’s link economy is to blame. But we’ll believe that New Corp intends privatize all of its digital content when we see it. This just might be Murdoch’s way of goading competitors to beat him to a punch he never intends to throw. Nevertheless, he talks the talk very well. “We’d rather have fewer people coming to our web sites — but paying,” Murdoch tells Sky News Australia, explaining that “the fact is, there isn’t enough advertising in the world to go around to make all the websites profitable.” MORE

fairuse01_1.jpgWIKIPEDIA: Fair use is a doctrine in United States copyright law that allows limited use of copyrighted material without requiring permission from the rights holders, such as use for scholarship or review. It provides for the legal, non-licensed citation or incorporation of copyrighted material in another author’s work under a four-factor balancing test. The term “fair use” originated in the United States, but has been added to Israeli law as well; a similar principle, fair dealing, exists in some other common law jurisdictions. Civil law jurisdictions have other limitations and exceptions to copyright. MORE

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