Re: Legality of search bots

From: C. Antonio Romero <>
Date: Thu 25 May 2000 23:05:20 -0700

> Is a search bot utility legal?
> This search bot is a utility that resides in the PC and
> does a composite search using the search results of
> other established search engines. However this utility
> only displays the results and links but does not grab
> and display the advertisement banner that would have
> appeared on the page of the search engine itself. That
> would deprive the advertiser who paid for the banner
> his due impression - am I correct?

I'd imagine that the makers of such tools (offhand I
think of Copernic 2000, but I'm sure there are others)
have some kind of agreements with the search engine
companies that lets them pull search info from a
special interface where ads are not shown, and compile
their results for that kind of redistribution.
Otherwise, services like Metacrawler, Dogpile etc.
couldn't operate either without getting into this kind
of trouble.

If there's a new would-be metasearch tool on the market
they should look into the legalities of doing the right
deals with the search engines. It'll also make their
tech stuff easier.

-Antonio Romero

Received on Fri May 26 2000 - 01:05:20 CDT


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