Monday, September 25

Links to Belgium. Belgium to links.

Perusing the Sunday Times at the weekend I discovered that one of their most entertaining columnists, India Knight, is actually Belgian. And she used to be called India Somethingelse. Quite how she thought that dropping a, probably slightly aristocratic sounding, certainly sophisticated continental surname, for Knight, was ever a step in the right direction is beyond me. However, she does a very good job of both appearing to be full of remorse for the decision and of articulating just why Jacques Brel should be cherished by all. So I'll forgive her.

Which brings me to the possibility that search engines providing a link to a newspaper article such as Knight's homage to Jacques Brel could actually be illegal, if a court ruling in Belgium last week were to set a precedent for references to other print media. The ruling has forced Google to cut links in its news service to any articles from a number of French and German language publications in Belgium.

It seems odd to me that newspapers would band together to sue a internet service that actually aims to provide them with web traffic but the copyright laws appear to support them even if logic does not. But decide for yourself, here's a link to Google News' links of the coverage.

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