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A Bit Of A Stuff-up? 13 August 2001 Edition
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Stuff.co.nz has announced that it is now going to be charging for access to its story archives and those who want to read those older stories may have to pay up to $3 a pop to do so -- or will they?

As online publishers struggle to turn loss into profit, charging for online archives might be seen as a smart way of turning old content into revenue and what could go wrong with such a simple idea?

Well, perhaps two words look set to "stuff" up these great plans:

Google's Cache

Yes -- that indispensable resource that is the Google search engine might just trip up much of Stuff's revenue generating plans.

For example -- let's assume we're looking for Stuff.co.nz stories about Helen Clark. Entering this query pulls up about 300 such stories.

Of course, clicking on the links to pages on the stuff.co.nz site gives a simple page that says "The page you requested is no longer available" -- but click on the link to Google's cached copy and you get the full story.

Readers Say
(updated hourly)
  • Knowstuff... - Anders
  • Google cache... - Ian
  • the internet vs humans... - Dominic
  • Stuff.co.nz tv listings... - Nigel
  • GetStuffed.co.nz... - Martin
  • Have Your Say

    Now of course the Google archive won't be totally comprehensive -- after all, it doesn't spider the Stuff.co.nz site on a daily basis -- but before you hand over your $3.00 it's certainly going to be worth trying Google's cache first eh?

    I wonder how long before INL go bitching to Google about "breach of copyright"?

    In fact, let me make life simple for you:

    Search Stuff Archives for FREE!

    Search WWW Search Stuff.co.nz

    Of course there are other news sites that still offer free searching of their archives so if you can't find it free on Stuff -- keep looking elsewhere.

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