WAN Calls on Google To Embrace ACAP

By: E&P Staff

The World Association of Newspapers has again called on Google to embrace a new publishing standard that allows Web site terms and conditions to be placed in machine-readable format so that publishers can have a say in how news aggregators and search engine companies use their content, according to a statement.

The current standard, called robots.txt, allows publishers to accept or reject search engine “crawlers” that are used to find content and re-purpose it on third party Web sites like Google News. But it does not allow publishers any options other than “yes” or “no”. The new ACAP standard, developed by a consortium of publishing groups, including WAN, allows publishers more options.

Publishers in 16 countries worldwide have started implementing ACAP, or the Automated Content Access Protocol, on their Web sites. More information about it can be found at http://www.the-acap.org.

Google European executive Ron Jonas was quoted as saying this week that the company was happy with the status quo, which “provides everything most publishers need.”

The Paris-based WAN, the global organisation for the newspaper industry, defends and promotes press freedom and the professional and business interests of newspapers world-wide.

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