If you ever want proof that the Interweb can be a confusing place then you have to look no further than a little spat that has broken out here in recent times.
The agency reckons that any link to a newspaper is worth €300, which seems a little steep? About €300 too steep in my opinion. Strangely enough, one of the papers the agency represents – the Irish Times – also thinks it is €300 too steep.
I’m with the Times on this one. The whole essence of the Interweb is that it is free, and is bound together with links. If someone wants to quote one of my scribbles [why? I don’t know] then I have no problem with that provided they link back to the original. If they quote and don’t link, then that is plagiarism in my book.
I think the agency’s biggest problem is that they don’t understand the Web. If I am to be billed for every link, then I simply won’t link. As my readers wouldn’t then have a reference point, I would probably have to plagiarise the original article, which would be wrong but necessary. Even if I only copied extracts, the biggest loser is the paper as their work is now unattributed and they are losing potential traffic. They are very unlikely to discover my little ploy, unless they do a regular search for articles containing their text and I would wish them luck with that one!
I see this is now to be discussed by our Lords and Masters, as if they didn’t have better things to do.
It’s all a massive waste of time caused by that modern disease that is sweeping the country – trying to scrape cash off anyone and everyone under any pretext, no matter how daft.
I have just included three links.
I wonder if they’ll accept a cheque?