Wednesday, June 19, 2002

These Links Were Made for Breaking? III
In a surprising display of tight-fistedness, NPR prohibits anyone anywhere from linking to any part of NPR's Web site -- without their express written consent. This makes no sense. Like the Dallas Morning News, NPR is in the information business -- and it seems to be in their best interest that people go to their site. And it seems that links on other Web sites could, um, do drive some of their traffic.

I can understand their concerns with permanent links on a home page that incorporates the logo or other IP -- much less framing -- but linking to any NPR page in any way whatsoever? Sheer silliness to limit this activity. This is like Time magazine prohibiting people from putting the magazine on newsstands.

As before, my solution? Boycott. If I can't link directly to a Web site I'm interested in sharing with people, I'm not going to link at all. I encourage you to do the same. While I did include NPR's link permission request form, I did not fill it out, and I will not share NPR links in the future. They haven't earned our attention. Like Orb says, "What part of public don't they understand in the name National Public Radio?"

Cory Doctorow's involved in an active discussion of the legal implications of this over at BoingBoing.

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