DRM: February 2007 Archives


February 13, 2007

A bunch of Belgian publishers just won suit aginst Google News. What's going on here is kind of interesting. The newspapers allow free access to the articles for a limited time and then move them to a paid archive. Google News indexed (and cached parts of) the articles when they were free, and the cache is still accessible even after free access is ended.

Google has responded by not even indexing (let alone caching) the relevant sites That's not really a win for Google or the publishers. A better compromise would be for the cache to expire at the same time as the article went subscription only. This could be done manually on a per-site basis or with some new HTTP/HTML indicator that told Google when to remove the cache entry (as far as I know, the current HTTP caching technology doesn't really support this, though I suppose you could repeatedly probe the site to see when permission was revoked).