by Mike Masnick
Wed, Nov 5th 2008 8:08am
I know that many folks disagree with my view that Google's decision to settle with book authors and publishers was a huge long term strategic mistake, but it appears others are beginning to recognize the issues. Already, we've seen Harvard bail out on the deal, since it seems to work at cross purposes to Harvard's mission, but more importantly, others are realizing the implicit statement behind Google's caving: information is not free, and those who have information should line up to Google and demand to get paid. In fact, as found on Romenesko, some are wondering when newspaper and magazine execs will realize what the book scanning deal means, and start demanding the same sort of deal from Google. I would suggest it goes even further than that. If Google is setting up a pool to pay authors, and if that leads to them doing a similar thing for newspapers and magazines, why not other websites as well? Google has now set a precedent of being willing to pay in order to display works in its index, and that's going to backfire badly.
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