Is Aggregating Online Classifieds A Bad Thing?
from the it's-more-traffic... dept
Yesterday, we wrote about how the Tribune Company was not only offering up its own free online classifieds service, but was also aggregating other free classified sites like Craigslist. This came just a little while after another site launched specifically to aggregate classified ads by location. In the comments to yesterday’s posts, someone suggested that this was somehow “stealing” content and that Craigslist should send lawyers after these sites. This seemed like a strange idea. Not only does it seem to go against everything that Craigslist clearly stands for, it would be a short-sighted move. These other sites drive more traffic. It’s like free advertising. However, it appears that some other newspapers are confused about this idea and are talking about blocking other aggregators from scraping their content. Of course, this actually makes their classified content less valuable, because fewer people will see the ads — and the classified business is all about going where the most people are.