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I've been on my hols for a couple of weeks, and while I have the simmering antipathy between the news media and Google has broken into open warfare with the release of the dramatically entitled Hamburg Declaration. A document in which a broad assortment of European publishers (roughly speaking) argue that Google news and other such aggregators are stealing their intellectual property. Google's response can be summarised as follows: <meta name="googlebot" content="noindex"> (i.e. change your metatags to stop the Googlebot indexing your site - something any site owner can do.) Here...

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Newspaper aggregation and the political demise of the English squirearchy

I recently did some consultancy work on the shift to digital for a large newspaper, which is why I was particularly interested in this recent post about content aggregation and the newspaper business by Nico Flores at On Demand Media. The crux of Nico's argument (one to which I subscribe) is that the real value of newspapers is their ability to aggregate content, something that wasn't necessarily apparent when they were confined to print. However, as Nico points out elsewhere, there are some powerful forces that make it difficult for newspapers to adopt a new aggregation-based model, in wh...

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The Guardian datastore

The Guardian Datastore is an excellent resource, where editors source and collate data (often as Google docs spreadsheets), which readers can then use to create their own mashups and visualizations. Amongst other things, they currently have the latest data on MP's expenses, world booze consumption and two centuries of bio diversity data from Wicken Fen in Cambridgeshire. Guardian editor-in-chief Alan Rusbriger explains why data and the Guardian Datastore matters. Also, the Guardian Datastore is running a competition for: 1) The best user experience for understanding meaning in data, and ...

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