Google agrees to limit access to free news

2 Dec 2009

Search giant Google has bowed to pressure from newspaper publishers and agreed to limit the number of articles users can read for free.

Google had operated a “first click free” programme that allowed a Google News or Google search user to find and read articles, even if those articles were blocked behind a subscription wall. However, readers had found they could read an unlimited number of articles for free as long as they continued to use Google.

The change to the programme will now allow publishers to limit to five per day the number of free articles readers can access through Google.

Any more than five articles and readers will be routed to payment or registration pages.              

Google announced the change in a blog post.

Media mogul Rupert Murdoch was one of Google’s most outspoken critics on the matter, claiming that Google was profiting from online news provided by media companies. 

Article courtesy of