The newspaper “de-indexing” movement is gaining steam it would appear. This is partly an irrational “revenge” play by newspaper publishers who blame Google for their own inability to really adapt to a culture in transition. Wounded and reeling from subscriber and ad revenue losses they’re “striking back.”
There are now several publishers in league with Murdoch & Co. considering pulling their content from Google (we’ll see if it actually happens).
I’m mostly taking the day off but I’ll say this . . .
The strategy will utterly fail. Google will not be hurt, Bing will not see a great uptick in traffic (if it’s the exclusive partner) and the newspapers will lose visibility, page views and ad revenues as a consequence. Contrary to their fantasies, it will also hurt their brands (how much would remain to be seen).
The current newspaper predicament is the result of inertia and a failure to act over a period of years, as well as hubris to a degree. Their belief in the value of their content (especially at News Corp.) and, if removed from Google, its capacity to humble the search engine is misplaced. Newspapers need to build more user-centric experiences and have myriad, different ways to distribute their content — as well as offer clever subscriber incentives, etc. (Obviously this is a crude list of recommendations.)
This emerging “take that” approach will simply boomerang and accelerate their current decline.