November 19, 2010

The Online News War

The newspaper business is clearly caught in a conundrum between providing free online content and making enough money to operate a business. That is ostensibly why the Denver Post and other Colorado newspapers recently threatened a local political blog with "injunctive relief" action if they fail to "cease and desist from any and all unauthorized literal copying..."

It seems the blog had a "gentlemen's agreement" not to exerpt more than two paragraphs from a story it linked, but routinely lifted as many as eight paragraphs.

A ThreeSources post this brazen is indeed rare. If you wanted to "whole thing, read, now" you'd click through, right?

Media and Blogging Posted by JohnGalt at November 19, 2010 3:01 PM

This is like the Righthaven shakedown. At what point did newspapers discover there was more money to be had in copyright lawsuits than in publishing a newspaper?

In the movie "Get Shorty," Harry Zimm (Gene Hackman) says "I once asked this literary agent what kind of writing paid the best. He said, 'Ransom notes.'" Clearly, he wasn't far wrong; extortion letters from lawyers are probably closely related.

Posted by: Keith Arnold at November 19, 2010 5:37 PM

Consider these famous words: "This telecast is copyrighted by the NFL for the private use of our audience. Any other use of this telecast or of any pictures, descriptions, or accounts of the game without the NFL's consent, is prohibited."

So I'm standing at the water cooler Tuesday morning with my partner who missed the previous night's Chargers game, and I am telling him about the game. Suddenly, out of nowhere, this process server appears...

Posted by: Keith Arnold at November 19, 2010 5:45 PM

Righthaven. You can ruin my day with one word. I got the forms all filled and am ready to send my $105 Goram dollars in. I can list other sites for $30 each -- anybody want in for their blogs?

Posted by: jk at November 20, 2010 11:07 AM

JK: There's an add-on for the Firefox browser called BlockSite that I've installed, and set it up to prevent me from accidentally visiting any Righthaven websites. Cheap insurance. You can't quote what you don't see.

Posted by: Keith Arnold at November 20, 2010 11:38 AM

And I might be able to avoid their high quality media sites as well, ka. The scary part to me is the comments.

Posted by: jk at November 21, 2010 11:36 AM | What do you think? [5]