If you happen to have a life outside of the internet, you likely missed the blogstorm this weekend over the Associated Press’s attempts to force the Drudge Retort to stop quoting AP stories–it even sent a cease and desist letter to the blog.
Well, how do you think the blogosphere reacted to that? Yep, you guessed it. Just about everyone, who’s not AP, went on the attack, accusing the AP of being out of its mind and trying to re-define the legal definition of “fair use.”
Now, it would have been different, if the AP was trying to stop a blogger from scraping all of its news articles, but we’re talking about seven items, with quotes less than 80 words!
The NYT reports the AP is backtracking, but only so that it can re-group, take a breather and then try again to prevent bloggers from quoting its articles.
“We don’t want to cast a pall over the blogosphere by being heavy-handed, so we have to figure out a better and more positive way to do this,” Mr. Kennedy said.
Mr. Kennedy said the company was going to meet with representatives of the Media Bloggers Association, a trade group, and others. He said he hopes that these discussions can all occur this week so that guidelines can be released soon.
That’s all well and good, but in the meantime, many bloggers are taking their own action against the Associated Press. Over at TechCrunch, Michael Arrington has declared a ban on AP…
So here’s our new policy on A.P. stories: they don’t exist. We don’t see them, we don’t quote them, we don’t link to them. They’re banned until they abandon this new strategy, and I encourage others to do the same until they back down from these ridiculous attempts to stop the spread of information around the Internet.
Which certainly has me thinking about how Marketing Pilgrim should respond.
Should we abide by any new guidelines issued by the AP? Should we continue to quote the AP, using our own interpretation of what is “fair use” not AP’s? Or, like TechCrunch, should we jump on the “ban” wagon and never quote AP again?
What do you think we should do?