Friday 24 February 2023

Breaking the internet

Google News is getting pared back in Canada in response to Canadian legislation that would force platforms to pay news platforms for links.

Remember that one of the founding principles of the web, right at the start, is that linking is free. People can put up paywalls if they want. They can set robots.txt to block indexing. But you can't charge somebody just for linking to you.

Canadian media platforms, like failing New Zealand media platforms, want to put a link tax on platforms.

So they're getting fewer links to Canadian news. At least as a test, so the platform's ready if Canada passes the legislation. 
The company said Wednesday that it is temporarily limiting access to news content for under four per cent of its Canadian users as it assesses possible responses to the bill. The change applies to its ubiquitous search engine as well as the Discover feature on Android devices, which carries news and sports stories.

I still think this is extortion. And the right response to an extortionist is not to pay. 

Me on this stuff from 2021... 

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