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03/21/2005 Archived Entry: "web publication and citation"

In a strange parallel to the Stephen Schwartz flap -- and may I suggest that the phrase "scrofulous barrator" be linked to his photo? -- I see that Agence France Presse is now suing Google, demanding that Google no longer link to AFP's web content. (Most outfits claw and connive to get listed in Google. Well, there's no accounting for management.)

Guys, the rules of the web are fairly simple. If you make an article or photo freely available on the web, that's publication. I can't copy the image and put it on my own server -- that's a republication, and a violation of copyright law. But I can link to the image you have published -- that's a citation, as Eric Garris has pointed out. And of course Google can quote a short extract of an AFP article under the "fair use" rule.

To AFP: if you don't want your web-published content to be accessible, hire a high-school student to write some code to limit access to it. It's not that hard. Else go back to the Daugerreotype.     —brad

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