Google Does Magazine Search

Google Blogs the news and Danny Sullivan has an excellent summary of what the service does and currently doesn’t do.

Here is a 2-page spread from New YorK Magazine on Tom Stoppard.

Google is mainly (entirely?) working from scans (yes I know that there were no PDFs in the 50’s, 60’s and 70’s). I am not sure that there are any current issues in the archive I couldnt see anything yet from the noughties (correction Popular Science is there up to Feb 2008). In this respect the magazine service is rather like the historic newspaper archive that Google has also been working on. It is building up a large ‘long tail’ whilst the magazine and newspaper publishers dither about what to do with the short head (hint: think about selling subscriptions — that is what Google is soon going to be doing for new books). Isn’t this the strongest possible wake-up call for magazine publishers? Hey folks, time to get your current issues up and running on the web. Make your magazines searchable through Google and sell subscriptions to them through Exact Editions!

Thanks to Google for pointing out the way things should go. Thanks to Google for once again creating a proper web version of print objects.

Footnote: Google is now indexing magazines in the Exact Editions service where the pages have been made open access by the publisher. Google reads the ascii version of the pages, which is also there to aid the print-impaired audience. It would be practical for Google to index all our pages and produce search results for the whole content even the stuff behind subscription barriers. If any Google publisher-liaison person reads this perhaps they can tell us how to link up with Google on that!

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