We've been linking to Business Week's website for many, many years here on Techdirt. A quick search
shows a long list of posts that all link to articles on the Business Week site. In fact, Business Week has hired a PR firm that has often sent us stories, requesting that we write posts to them. I actually found it rather amusing that a publication would have PR people to try to get more buzz about its own articles -- but those PR people were always friendly, and some of the links they sent were actually quite good. Yet, apparently, someone didn't make this clear to other folks at Business Week. Mathew Ingram
points us to a post by SmugMug's CEO, who claims that Business Week demanded he take down a link to a story about his company
, pointing to this user agreement
that forbids deep-linking, among other things. In the past, we've seen other sites make such claims, though none have been shown to be legal. You simply can't forbid someone from linking to you, no matter how much you might wish to do so. It's rather surprising that a site like BusinessWeek.com would have such a policy in place (especially while actively seeking such links from others) and even more surprising that someone there would move to enforce such a policy. In the meantime, if they would prefer it, we can stop linking to Business Week.