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Content, Writing and Copyright Forum

    
Combining RSS Feeds
Essive

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3320313 posted 6:08 pm on Apr 24, 2007 (gmt 0)

If I created a RSS reader in my office from over 100 RSS news feeds and then filtered out the stories I wanted to link to that are relevant to my website - what would be the legal rights for this activity if I picked, say, 10 links from those 100 RSS feeds and simply added them to my site as links that I found?

In this case I'm not using the RSS feed directly on my site - but capturing the best stories and providing links directly back to the sources.

Thoughts?

 

jtara

WebmasterWorld Senior Member jtara us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3320313 posted 7:52 pm on Apr 24, 2007 (gmt 0)

<Preface with the usual "I am not a lawyer, this forum is not for legal advice, etc.>

Sounds good to me. You are not re-publishing the RSS feed. You're just using it as a tool to find pages that you want to link to.

You might do the same thing using Google. Do you think Google would likely have some legal claim because you linked to sites that you found using Google?

Indeed, I'd imagine that one of the reasons that web sites consent to being included in colsolidated RSS feeds is so that they might gain links from others who find out about their articles through the RSS feed.

I'll leave the legal stuff between you and your lawyer. Ethically, this is one of the few "permission seeking" posts I've seen on here that seems OK.

eventus

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3320313 posted 10:03 pm on Apr 24, 2007 (gmt 0)

Unless you've been given license by the original source of the news article you have no right to use the content in this way.

jtara

WebmasterWorld Senior Member jtara us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3320313 posted 4:29 am on Apr 25, 2007 (gmt 0)

Unless you've been given license by the original source of the news article you have no right to use the content in this way.

The poster stated that he is only linking to the articles, not re-publishing them.

By your logic, nearly every website on the planet is in violation...

That said, there have been some court cases involving "deep linking". So still best to consult an attorney.

eventus

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3320313 posted 1:02 pm on Apr 25, 2007 (gmt 0)

Deep linking isn't the issue.

The issue is that the poster was taking the headlines and I am assuming the description element, when available, and posting it on his website/intranet.

This is not allowed by most news sources. Those elements he is using, the headlines and the summaries, are copyrighted. The use is commercial, he's using it on a website or intranet in the office. Whether he profits from it or not is not material to the argument here.

News sources CHARGE people to use the content in this manner for commercial use.

Google tried to use that "But we link to you" argument with AP and AFP when they were put on notice by those entities regarding the same behaviour. Google settled before litigation, I think because they knew they would lose a case if it went before the bench.

Essive

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3320313 posted 2:18 pm on Apr 25, 2007 (gmt 0)

Alright, thanks for the comments. Let me change this. What if I altered the Titles and pointed to multiple links of the same story.

Here's my example - in today's headline Reuters has:
"Putin critics rally around Yeltsin's memory"

Based on multiple news sources I could change this to:
"Russia and world says farewell to Yeltsin" and point to AP, Reuters, etc.

You can't tell me that journalists from various news agencies don't use other agencies to do the same, right?

kool002

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3320313 posted 10:56 pm on May 3, 2007 (gmt 0)

So what about Topix.net and other niche search engine.

what about even google or any search engine which crawls each page and stores few words from the content of that page in its database.

Without taking few words from a webpage, a search engine cannot exists at all.

eventus

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3320313 posted 11:56 am on May 4, 2007 (gmt 0)

Good question:

Topix is jointly owned by the media outlets that it scrapes.

Trom Topix
Based in Palo Alto, Calif., Topix LLC is a privately held company with investment from Gannett Co., Inc. (NYSE: GCI), The McClatchy Company (NYSE: MNI) and Tribune Company (NYSE: TRB)

Makes a big difference if the content you use is your own.

Google got in big trouble and has been sued by AP, AFP, and many other media outlets over the use of the content. Google settled the suits quietly and have been forced to pay licensing.

Other search engines like Yahoo, Ask etc all pay licensing to use news content.

Face it. the fact is that you can't st use other parties content to build a service without exposure.

Go60Guy

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3320313 posted 3:25 pm on May 4, 2007 (gmt 0)

My gosh! What ever happened to the fair use doctrine?

kool002

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3320313 posted 4:13 pm on May 4, 2007 (gmt 0)

"
Topix is jointly owned by the media outlets that it scrapes.
"

True, but Topix does not own or have contract with all the sites in the universe that it scrape.

May be your theory applies to News but then again what is a news?
I write about new feature of a software or widget or benefits of it. Is that a news? I mean anything not coming from AP etc is it a news or not? or just an article?

Thanks

eventus

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3320313 posted 4:33 pm on May 4, 2007 (gmt 0)

Fair use and other doctrines like Derivative works and parody etc all have a place but what was claimed by the original poster doesn't constitute fair use.

Here is the test:

The four factors judges consider are:

the purpose and character of your use
the nature of the copyrighted work
the amount and substantiality of the portion taken, and
the effect of the use upon the potential market.

Also we can further complicate this with arguments on the "Hot News" doctrine. If a source has a scoop or exclusibve then there is more protection vs if the infomation came from a public event like a press conference.

This theory applies to any copyrightable work. Not just news which is just more timely.

Copyrights are one of the more clear-cut areas in the huge grey area of law.

Go60Guy

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3320313 posted 5:47 pm on May 4, 2007 (gmt 0)

All those niceties aside, I make extensive use of RSS news feeds from Google, Yahoo and MSN on my sites. I could use the N.Y Times and the like, if I washed. Obviously, the resulting material on my pages includes a headline and a snippet. Surely, there's no problem with this. How does the OP's suggested use make a difference?

eventus

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3320313 posted 8:05 pm on May 4, 2007 (gmt 0)

Absolutely there is a problem with that if you are using them like you are on your website

First, the Terms of Service for Yahoo, Google, et al all specifically forbid the use of the service for that purpose. You've chosen to ignore that provision.

Additionally you are using the IP of the news source, (USAToday, whatever) for commercial use without licesnse.

You'll see that those feeds are provided for private and non-commercial use only.

You are using the articles for commercial gain (ADSENSE).

[edited by: jatar_k at 10:28 pm (utc) on May 4, 2007]
[edit reason] user requested edit [/edit]

Go60Guy

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3320313 posted 9:22 pm on May 4, 2007 (gmt 0)

I don't appreciate you're linking to my site and accusing me of legal impropriety, which I deny. I'm asking the moderators to remove the link. I think you're way out of line. There are plenty of other boards where flaming is the order of the day, but not here.

[edited by: Go60Guy at 10:01 pm (utc) on May 4, 2007]

Go60Guy

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3320313 posted 10:09 pm on May 4, 2007 (gmt 0)

I should add to the above that the post I'm referring to is not, IMO, in keeping with items 10 and 26 of the WebmasterWorld TOS.

eventus

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3320313 posted 11:12 pm on May 4, 2007 (gmt 0)

I agree and I was wrong to link, I would have edited it myself, however the time had elapsed.

--

Regardless I think that I made my point regarding allowed use. Again it's pretty clear what is allowed and isn't.

Go60Guy

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3320313 posted 11:18 pm on May 4, 2007 (gmt 0)

My thanks to the moderator who removed the link. Let's just say that opinions on this matter will vary, and my opinion is entirely contrary to that of the poster. I won't delve into it further because it is not the province of this board to define the law. Suffice it to say that there are very cogent arguments in derogation of the position taken above about my site.

kool002

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3320313 posted 2:11 am on May 5, 2007 (gmt 0)

Boy, what happened here?

Any Thanks to all.

natto

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3320313 posted 12:26 pm on May 24, 2007 (gmt 0)

I was going to ask the forum a very similar question but this topic has answered my initial question.

Here's my situation. I've got a website that shows RSS feeds from two sources. One is the Guardian Newspaper website's book news feed and the other is a list of new articles from a writing website (my website is about creative writing by the way). Currently I've got Adsense running on these pages. I show the article title (which is also a link to the article on their website) and the content of their description tag (usually the first paragraph of the story or article).

Based on what I've read in this post, I shouldn't be showing any of the feeds on my page, mainly because of the Adsense on these pages.

So, my question is this. If I removed the Adsense from these pages, would that remove the commercial usage and would I therefore be ok in using these feeds? I was kind of under the impression that if someone created a feed from their website then you were free to use that feed. I can't remember what the Guardian terms and conditions were like so I'll need to revisit those but I do know that the writing site had no information on the usage of the feed (it's a small, one-person outfit I believe).

Beagle

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3320313 posted 9:28 pm on May 24, 2007 (gmt 0)

...I was kind of under the impression that if someone created a feed from their website then you were free to use that feed.

This was a big issue when blogs and RSS were both new - a lot of bloggers didn't realize their blogging software did RSS by default until they saw their content showing up somewhere else. As with any use of someone else's content, check the terms and conditions as you mentioned with the Guardian, and if there aren't any terms listed, ask.

...I do know that the writing site had no information on the usage of the feed (it's a small, one-person outfit I believe).

...which would make them more likely to give you permission to use the feed. It's always nice to be able to put a "used by permission..." notice on something. And, who knows, if you start communicating you might find other ways for your two sites to benefit each other.


natto

10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 3320313 posted 8:06 am on May 25, 2007 (gmt 0)

And, who knows, if you start communicating you might find other ways for your two sites to benefit each other.

Absolutely, that's a very good point.

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