Quite probably RIAA is one of the most hated organisations on the internet, possibly followed by Microsoft, but as Bill Gates has been demonstrating recently, he actually seems quite a nice guy and “gets” technology and nerdy things.
There is increasing talk about Google in negative tones as they increase in power, and with people’s increasing dependence on Google service, and in the case of webmasters, traffic from Google and income from Google Adsense.
So now a small Danish website, Krak.dk is trying to destroy their reputation, and attacking bloggers. Well small in the global scheme of things, probably quite large in their Danish niche.
For the full story, Paul has a great write up about this Deep Linking Fine a company is charging.
Note, they didn’t deep link to a picture, they linked to a page with lots of advertising on it, giving both traffic and link equity.
Note that they have no mention of their insane deep linking policy on the pages themselves, only in their help files.
That is what gives them a PR7, all that linking and trust.
Lets examine their external linking a little
First of all links to their domain at root level
Now lets look at their total links to the domain including deep links
The difference (119000-41100) is 77900 deep links that could potentially be subject to paying 940 USD
I can’t calculate (quickly) how many unique domains are within those links, and obviously I don’t know if some of them have already licensed being able to link to a page – what a horrible concept.
Then again there are probably a lot more pages that have not appeared in the listing because of duplicate content or maybe there is some funny linking strategy going on.
Lets look at Google
That isn’t very many quality links, how did they get PR7? Well maybe Google is a little broken currently… who knows?
Lets do some Math
We will assume 10 links per site because I am sure some people have been stupid enough to give them a sitewide link rather than from a contact or about page.
Let us assume 1000 paying customers currently, though I highly doubt that
That is 6790 website owners who are just about to be hit by a deep linking tax
6790 * 940 USD = 6,382,600 USD
That is a significant though in my mind highly dubious windfall
What can/should be done?
- people deep linking should remove the links
- they should probably make a post or comment stating why they did it, without a link to Krak as they don’t deserve link equity, as you can’t trust them
- if Krak is using your personal data, you might think about asking them to remove it – it would only take a few 100 removal requests for them to make a change in policy
- give your support to a competing service instead
If they lose half of their link equity, they are going to really notice a difference
What an interesting reversal on paid link, you have to pay them 940 USD to link to them, which of course I didn’t in this post.
Whatever you do, if you write about this story, don’t link to Krak – link to Paul, the Dog site with a word such as Hunde Blog – Kennel Kaarup, and the Digg Story
This isn’t just an off-beat thing in Denmark, something like this could happen in any country. Recently there has been a big discussion regarding linking to videos that are breaking copyright.
Here we are seeing someone being charged for linking through to information stored possibly about them on a 3rd party site. Damn that is ominous.
I am not sure how long the rules on Krak have been in place and how long the site has been deep linking, but imagine LinkedIn decided to charge a $1000 fee for linking to your own LinkedIn profile. I have suggested to Paul to go delving into archive.org
Dog Lovers Digg This (a link to Pauls Story not mine)