Google will finally begin to penalize pirate sites in its search algorithm. What took so long?

The Wall Street Journal is very good to put this context up high:

The move comes as Google itself is attempting to become a major seller and distributor of professional video and music content through a variety of services, from its YouTube video site to the Google Play online-media store to its pay-TV service in Kansas City, which required deals with cable-channel networks. It is pursuing such initiatives partly in a bid to compete with Apple Inc. and Amazon Inc., among other tech companies that distribute media.

Many media companies and content creators have been worried about Google’s role in facilitating online piracy or devaluing their content online, among other things. Google has been engaged in legal disputes with companies such as Viacom Inc. VIAB -0.70% as well as book publishers and authors for showing unauthorized music, video and book content on Google’s search engine and YouTube, though much of the allegations involve conduct from several years ago.

Or as Jack Shafer puts it on Twitter: “Google was blase about copyright until one day its business plan shifted!”

The New York Times has a new vlog it calls The Daily Shoe, which it featured prominently on the home page today.

Today’s edition: “How to Wear a Triple-Print Mary Jane Heel for Fall.” That shoe you’ll wear a few times goes for $775, or roughly two and a half weeks of gross pay for that Duane Reade cashier (assuming the manager gives her forty hours!) a block from the NYT’s Renzo Piano building as NYC unemployment rate is at 10 percent. Just sayin’.

Wash that one down with Rolling Stone’s outstanding piece on “The Sharp, Sudden Decline of America’s Middle Class.”

Oddly enough, the Times won’t let you embed its video, so if you want to check it out, hit the link.

— Simon Schama’s Financial Times column on the Olympics, and how they’ve been received in the US and the UK, is worth a read:

At a time when the gap between rich and poor is growing wider, the educational prospects for minorities are loaded with prohibitive debt, when democracy has become the catspaw of plutocrats; what the American people want from the strength, grace and resolution of their athletics is one place where the founding promise of upward social mobility, that Dream thing, is not a sick joke. In the republic of exertion the dream comes true. You have your gift, you work it to the max; you bring it to the day; you breast the tape, touch the lip of the pool, you let yourself weep as the Star Spangled Banner plays and you fold it about your shoulders - and it feels still that there is a place for young Americans, against whom the odds have never been more brutally stacked, to be winners.

If anything, there’s even more at stake for the British. The economy is flatlining; the coalition seems to have lost the plot. Yet from Danny Boyle’s Fabian extravaganza to the sudden cascade of golds that began with Heather and Helen sitting in their boat looking as ecstatically amazed as all the rest of us, a startled, almost embarrassed, suspicion, that the British could actually be world beaters by being themselves, began to dawn.


Ryan Chittum is a former Wall Street Journal reporter, and deputy editor of The Audit, CJR's business section. If you see notable business journalism, give him a heads-up at rc2538@columbia.edu.