Freier Verkehr? Nein Danke.

What’s up with Belgian journalism? I don’t read French or German very well, so I can’t report on its quality or relevence, but they’re either thoroughly ashamed of it or so proud of it that they want to keep it all for themselves. Not content with taking big nasty Google to court for sending them more internet traffic for no extra fee, the little nation’s major media group has sent a stern letter to Microsoft asking to be removed from MSN news searches as well. The issues surrounding aggregation of copyrighted content are complex, of course, but this smacks of a rearguard action, and King Canute still ended up with wet feet.

3 thoughts on “Freier Verkehr? Nein Danke.”

  1. Oi Paul: the two main languages in Belgium are *Dutch* (not German) and French.

    What you’re doing is the equivalent of calling a group of Scotsmen “You English”.



  2. Well, I’ll admit to not being aware of that, and thanks for pointing it out. However, the linked article states that it was the French and German language articles that the company was asked to remove, and hence I went with those in my report.

    Chalk another one up for the value of proper research!

  3. Belgium has three official languages, hence the confusion: Dutch, French AND German. The press group so proudly fighting for their independence from the Internet owns publications in French and German, while their Dutch counterparts have quite sensibly been watching from the sidelines.

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