Google’s Approach To Other Peoples Content

Anyone would think there’s a turf war going on in Belgium, that could spread even wider. Or something 🙂

Google outline their approach to content:

Protecting content owners’ rights, respecting their wishes, helping to reward them for their creative endeavors – these are the primary principles that guide Google’s approach. We believe it’s the best way to make the world’s information universally accessible and useful.

No surprises there.

I do believe that Google are, generally speaking, acting appropriately, however I don’t think they’re quite as divorced from content provision as they like to make out.

If content is defined as the authorship of words on a page, or a piece of video, then – no, Google doesn’t do content. But is content more than that? If you scan across Google News, it looks like the front page of a newspaper. Is the front page of a newspaper not content? You can scan across Google News, get a good idea of what is going on, and not have to click through to the source. I guess it could be argued that the value is mostly in the aggregation and categorisation.

A question: does the author who publishes an html document on a web server, give a search engine the right to index that document simply by virtue of publication?

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