Daily Mirror joins attack on aggregators

Old Skool newspapers are upping their efforts to scupper news aggregation sites with the the Daily Mirror now joining those blocking NewsNow from sniffing around its web site.

The paper is teaming up with Murdoch' Sun and Times in blocking NewsNow, whose chairman Struan Bartlett called the move "an unacceptable restraint of freedom of expression".

He told BBC News that his site stopped carrying Mirror.co.uk content in December 2009.

The Mirror says it objects to NewsNow charging real money for its clippings service and tweaked its robot.txt file to thwart the NewsNow bots.

"Mirror Group invests significant sums to fund the journalism and produce the content that NewsNow has been selling by subscription for quite some time now," said Matt Kelly, Digital Content Director at Mirror Group. "We'll thrive without NewsNow. The question is, will they thrive without us and our fellow content producers?" he added.

NewsNow has got up newspapers' noses by declining to pay for a licence from the Newspaper Licensing Agency (NLA) to distribute news clippings to paying customers. Such a licence would cost the outfit around £36,000.