We tend to forget that search engines - which are what enable us to find interesting web content that we might want to link to in the first place - predate the internet as we know it today . Search engines have evolved in DNA-like fashion from the days of lists maintained by people like Tim Berners-Lee on CERN, to early programs like Archie, the first search program written by a student and Gopher (1991, even I remember that, I hate to admit!) to all the variants we now know today.
This is an IT journalist's persepctive on why search engines and aggregators are not stealing content. It gives enough technical background of what search engines and aggregators actually do without boggling the mind of internet users who just want to create, forward and follow links in the way the internet was designed to allow.
This is written from the point of view of the PR industry, but the issues of the way old media are coping with the new e-economy landscape has much wider implications to the end users of search engines and news aggregrators - all businesses, organisations and individuals.