From the "This is going to backfire" category_

A Brussels court said Google Inc. violated copyright laws by publishing links to Belgian newspapers without permission and ordered the company to remove them, setting a precedent for future cases in Europe.

. . .

The journals lose advertising revenue when Google uses snippets of articles and links directly to stories, bypassing ads on their Web sites, said Bruno Vandermeulen, a Brussels-based lawyer at Bird & Bird.

The journals are going to lose a hell of a lot more advertising revenue when no one reads their online paper anymore. Generally, the people who access your site through Google News are those who aren't going to click through several pages of your site to find the stories they're interested in. Google wasn't stealing the content, they were giving a short snippet and linking to your site. With as big of an audience as Google News reaches, that's driving a hell of a lot of pageviews your way.

Example #837 of why print media companies don't understand the web. I won't shed any tears when they're gone - the companies that evolve to fit this pervasive new medium will be the powerhouses of the next century.


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