“Requesting removal from our index,” touts Google’s Vanessa Fox, in announcing "enhanced" Webmaster Tools.
Should the Web’s content owners really rejoice though because Google’s “Webmaster Central” has posted page after page of specs detailing complex technology options only available to those with a Google “Webmasters Tools” account?What is Google’s “Webmaster Tools”: “A way to make your site more Google-friendly,” touts Google.
Do all of the Web’s millions of Web content owners really want a Google “Webmasters Tools” account?
Does every Website have a Webmaster capable of understanding and implementing Google’s “Webmasters Tools” required procedures.
Should every Web content owner, regardless of resources, capabilities, privacy concerns…be obligated to create a Google account to protect from unauthorized use of proprietary content.
NO, NO, NO.
Google’s complex, Google account required, opt-out of cache routine is a Google-centric one with a principal bottom-line objective: To help shield Google from copyright infringement claims so the Google no need to pay for use of others’ content business model can continue to thrive.
Google's opt-out modus operandi is not Web content owner friendly and may not prove a viable legal defense.
Way back in September, pre Google YouTube days, I predicted "Google, YouTube: multi-billion dollar ‘fair-use’ risky bets," underscoring the similarity of content exploitiation philosophies behind the two companies:
The “fair-use” doctrine is critical to Google’s multi-billion dollar business and to YouTube’s hoped for billion dollar valuation...Google CEO Eric Schmidt proudly waves the “fair-use” flag in defense of Google’s mission to obtain all the world’s content for free and YouTube directs its online copyright agnostic volunteer army of video uploaders to “fair-use” Websites.
Google makes a duplicate copy of the entire content of each Web page it crawls for indexing and then keeps the copy it created, and subsequently controls, within its own storage facilities. Google’s caching of third-party Web content, and display of the copied, cached content in Google’s core search results without content owners’ explicit permission, usurps management, control and ownership of the content from the actual creators and owners of the content.
For Google, however, it is merely fulfilling its vaunted mission to “organize the world’s information and make it more accessible.” If pressed for a legal rationale, Google is happy to talk about “fair use” and “opt-out.”
Google's touted "Webmaster Tools" are a Google-centric, defensive opt-out play.