Sgt_Kickaxe - 12:48 am on Nov 24, 2010 (gmt 0)
Large social-networking sites are walling off information posted by their users from the rest of the Web
No they aren't. If you're a regular user you can see it all just fine. They are walling it off from would be wholesale scrapers which is what search engines have become thanks to their monetizing efforts of all available data. Just TRY and get your website out of a search engines monetized translate feature for example, can't be done even though no permission was ever asked for or given.
Protecting copyright theft by massive corporations doesn't mean the entire net isn't becoming less neutral, place the blame where it belongs.
Full disclosure: I am guilty of walling off search engines by using the noarchive meta tag. I don't want anything more than a snippet or description from my pages displayed under any domain name but my own. I have to, search got greedy.