According to a report from the Financial Times, Microsoft is in talks with Rupert Murdoch's News Corp. to pay for the exclusive rights to deliver search results for papers like the Wall Street Journal, New York Post and others.
Collude with this man at your own risk, Microsoft.
Murdoch has been talking about erecting pay walls for his sites for a month now, threatening to block Google from indexing its articles for search in the process. The marriage of Microsoft's Bing search engine and Murdoch may seem like a good pair considering they have a common enemy in Google.
But as Ian Paul at PC World argues, in an effort to wound the search giant Microsoft may have accidentally shot itself in the foot.As Paul puts it, in a world where content is only exclusive until 15 minutes later when another news service writes their version of the same article, Microsoft's pact with News Corp. would only benefit them so long as every Wall Street Journal scoop remained a Wall Street Journal scoop ad infinitum. In other words, not likely.
Furthermore, Google would be making a big mistake by following Microsoft's lead. The Redmond giant wants to make Google pay for the news content it already gets for free. But Google doesn't actually make a ton of money off of its news service.
"Microsoft might think it would be making a wise move to pay for exclusive search content," writes Paul. "But trying to buy the Web out from under Google and other search engines is, to my mind, a fool's errand."