No, I have not joined the ranks of the journalism crowds even if the first paycheck that I ever got as a student way back in those days in California was for being a journalist. Sometimes it also seems that I was born behind the moon, and that unlike my savvy friends, I only learned about wire services during my first journalism class taught by a former AP reporter; of course I have the excuse that entered college at a very tender age, and that I had spent too much time libraries full of economics and medicine books.
Something caught my eye today while perusing the headlines on my Facebook home-page: a fellow from Sweden – a country of Pirate Party fame – had a link headlined “Is AP run by Idiots?” I got curious and clicked on the link. In part you will find the answer to this weighty question in the New York Times: the source of most wisdom.
“If someone can build multibillion-dollar businesses out of keywords, we can build multihundred-million businesses out of headlines, and we’re going to do that,” Mr. Curley said. The goal, he said, was not to have less use of the news articles, but to be paid for any use.
Now, this one has me in stitches: keywords and headlines are not even the same beast, and while I roll on the floor about the “multihundred-million businesses out of headlines,” make sure that I get the senior citizen award for lack of humour. One of us does not get the Internet, I am not sure if it is Curley or me. But then if the above is not circumstantial enough for you, let’s try the next one.
Mr. Curley declined to address the fair use question, or to say what action The A.P. would take against sites that use articles without licensing.“We’re not picking the legal remedy today,” he said. “Let’s define the scope of the problem.”
Houston, I think we have a problem! What kind of CEO goes on with a major business strategy and has not checked out the legal options?
Just for the record, and for some amusing reading, here is how AP has chosen their words, and really, you must read it carefully: I had to fight really hard against the temptation to lampoon the whole text. But I exagerate, the lake awaits and there is nothing that a ride on the Harley can not cure.