Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Google buys Papers of Record

Google is in the news again. Quoting SearchEngineWatch.com:
Google has completed the purchase of 20 million digitized historical newspaper pages from PaperofRecord.com. The two have had an agreement for two years and has now concluded in a sale that was voted on by shareholders of PaperofRecord's parent company, Cold North Wind, Inc.
This will definitely boost their historic newspaper digitization initiative (post, post). However, as Steve Arnold said in his blog post:
My thought is that this acquisition may be like putting a toe in the water. If it “feels” good, the GOOG may start making commercial databases free to users. The content becomes a platform for the online ads. With commercial database publishers hanging on to an outmoded business model, the commercial database sector could suffer sharp revenue drops. Libraries will point users to “free” services and if these prove satisfactory, commercial databases may be starved for revenue.
Google's vortex is getting stronger...

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