British Library newspaper archive plan riles Murdoch

From Sean Gabb

I hope this fails. It probably will. Most efforts to suck money out of Internet users tend to fail. I have increasing doubts regarding the legitimacy of copyright laws. In any event, I wouldn’t wish to see this particular propaganda conduit for the ruling class make even more money. [SIG]

British Library newspaper archive plan riles Murdoch
By Ian Burrell, Media Editor
Friday, 21 May 2010

The heir to Rupert Murdoch’s News Corporation empire attacked the
British Library yesterday for “harming the market” in print journalism
by allowing online access to its vast newspaper archive. James Murdoch,
head of News Corp in Europe and Asia, spoke out days ahead of his
company’s big gamble in introducing charges for access to the websites
of The Times and The Sunday Times.

5 responses to “British Library newspaper archive plan riles Murdoch

  1. Paul Robinson

    I’d like to think it will fail.

    The thing is, Murdoch and Co seem to have a knack for this sort of thing. This is a far less significant gamble then when Murdoch senior bet his entire company on Sky TV – and look at it’s virtually unassailable position now.

    I definitely wouldn’t bet against this working, but I hope it doesn’t.

  2. Paul Robinson

    “I’d like to think it will fail.”

    I mean that I hope Newscorp charging for news fails, not the British Library putting it all online for free!

  3. The Indie link is down already, chaps.

  4. Paul Robinson

    David, no it isn’t – for some reason, the link was split when posting. See the remainder underneath the underlined part – copy the whole lot into your browser and it works fine. Meantime, I’ll try it here:

  5. Tony Hollick

    I thought this blog was funny. Some of you will disagree, no doubt, but after Rand Paul trashing the 1964 Civil Rights Act (wiki Jim Crow Laws for background) then half taking it back I’m not so blase.



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    When we write about libertarianism, most liberals feel compelled to say something like, you know, I disagree with that viewpoint, but I respect that it’s principled and intellectually consistent.

    I say balderdookey. Libertarianism is kookoo. There can be no such thing as a basically stateless society (except for national defense and barest administration of law, I think are the exceptions they typically allow for). It’s just ridiculous. Civil society would collapse without the state.

    I’ve written this before, a few months ago. Conservatives, and libertarians, seem to think that we have regulations in this society because we have a bunch of underemployed pencil pushers sitting around dreaming up ways to make small business people’s lives miserable.

    It’s ridiculous. We have regulations because throughout history people in various pursuits did really sleazy and unethical things. They swindled investors, they dumped toxins into bodies of water, they made children work long hours for slave wages. Et cetera. And so laws were passed and regulations were written.

    And unfortunately such is man’s endless capacity for sleaze and unethicality that this process will never end: as technology presents new ways to be sleazy, we’ll always need to invent new ways to prevent sleaze from happening.

    Yes, fine. Some regulations are onerous. Liberals should always be sensitive to legitimate concerns along these lines.

    But you need a state. Time and history have proven no one else will perform these tasks.

    So there’s nothing in the least inellectually respectable about libertarianism. Intellectually consistent? Great. So was Goebbels. That doesn’t mean much to me.

    We all support a few libertarian-ish principles; we all agree that the state should have some limits. For example, I think it’s perfectly fine for the state to make fast-food joints post nutrition information. But I would oppose the state having the right to ban the Quarter Pounder. So we all get that kind of thing.

    But big-L Libertarianism is vapid. I hope in the next few months it is properly exposed as such.