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UK national newspapers neglecting sitemaps for better search indexing

April 24th, 2008 | 2 Comments | Posted by in Search

UK newspaper websites are not implementing standard protocols supported by search engines such as Yahoo and Google.

According to blogger and internet consultant Martin Belam, only two of the UK’s national newspapers use sitemap.xml
– a feature which lists all pages a given site wants to be indexed by a search engine.

And the winners are: The Daily Mail, which has sitemaps for individiual sections of the website; and The Scotsman, which has one central sitemap for all pages.

As Journalism.co.uk reported last month, TimesOnline and The Independent are the only UK national titles to support the ACAP protocol. They’ve made their choice – unsupported by the search giants – and so have the Mail and Scotsman, but what are the other paper’s doing to improve indexing of their content?

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Eric Schmidt – Google resistance to ACAP based on technology

March 19th, 2008 | 1 Comment | Posted by in Newspapers, Online Journalism, Search

Google CEO Eric Schmidt has denied that Google’s resistance to using ACAP is based on ‘wanting to control’ publishers information, insisting that it is strictly a technology issues.

Speaking to iTWire, Schmidt said: “ACAP is a standard proposed by a set of people who are trying to solve the problem [of communicating content access permissions]. We have some people working with them to see if the proposal can be modified to work in the way our search engines work. At present it does not fit with the way our systems operate.”

According to iTWire, Schmidt went on to deny that Google’s reluctance so far to use the rights and permissions technology was because Google wanted as few barriers as possible between online content and its search engines. “It is not that we don’t want them to be able to control their information.”

Schmidt made his comments after a tit-for-tat exchange last week in which Gavin O’Reilly, chairman of World Association of Newspaper and ACAP CEO, reacted strongly to claims made by a senior Google executive that the search engine believed ACAP was an unnecessary system and that its function could be fulfilled by existing web standards.

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