AP goes the blogosphere for copyright
Tuesday July 22nd 2008, 7:32 am

Associated Press sent a takedown notice last month to a blogger who has, like nearly every other blogger, cited snips of AP stories as part of his posts. Apparently AP haven’t heard of ‘fair use‘ and are utterly clueless about the independent yet loosely connected nature of blogs and bloggers.

I’m not nearly as concerned about getting a takedown notice from AP as I am with their negotiation of a ‘bloggers’ fair use agreement’ (as though bloggers have different rights or responsibilities than any other publishers) with some schmoe who claims to be the head of the ‘Media Bloggers Association,’ which is supposed to represent all bloggers.

When did bloggers en masse become a monolithic entity? When did I sign on to this ‘Media Bloggers Association?’ When did the Associated Press gain legal powers in excess of the fair use provisions of US copyright law?

Can’t you just hear a new Village People song- “It’s fun to play with the Deeeee-Emmmm-Ceee-Ayyyyy…”?

AP appear to have had a small commonsense epiphany according to Tigtog and are backpedalling at approximately Mach III, save for this silly negotiation with this ‘bloggers’ association’ which I’ve never heard of before.

I could see AP’s complaint if a blogger did nothing but mechanically quote entire AP stories verbatim with no other intent than to republish the story, without any additional commentary or discussion- and who earns income from advertising on their blog site. However, I’d have thought that instead of takedown notices, AP would be handing out pay-per-click cheques to self-funded bloggers who cite snips of AP stories and link back to an AP member publisher or broadcaster, which earns income from advertising on their site.

I’m quite happy to provide details to AP to send payment in consideration of my free linking to AP story publishers- when their commonsense kicks fully back in gear.


WRAP: AP recognised the silliness of their ways and have tiptoed away.

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