The last time I wrote "if the URL exists, you must acquit," it had to do with the way John Udell had basically published the URL to an audio file on a Web-based XML page. In his case, the end result was a podcast feed for NPR's This American Life that Internet users could point their podcatchers to. Udell did not rehost any content. On an XML page he hosted, he pointed to existing content that was hosted by its own publisher. This, as far as I was concerned, is no different than pointing to existing content from an HTML page (a standard Web page). Today, we have another hyperlinking tale of woe... this time from Redmonk analyst James Governor who was issued a cease and desist letter for hyperlinking --- yes, just hyperlinking --- to a URL on Gartner's Web site.
As a side note, in his blog, James Governor talks about a new "formally documented" methodology regarding Gartner's Magic Quadrants: a type of graphical rating system that compares vendors in a particular market niche. The quadrants show who the leaders are, who the challengers are (challengers therefore are not leaders), the vendors' ability to execute, and who Gartner thinks are the visionaries versus the niche players. It's good news to hear that Gartner is more thoroughly documenting its methodologies. My feeling has been and continues to be that for them to really take transparency to the next level, their Magic Quadrants (which often make it into the public domain without any corresponding text -- just do a Google image search on "Magic Quadrant") should be color keyed to show which of the vendors shown in the quadrants are Gartner clients and which are not.