RUPERT Murdoch has been forced to back down in his war with Google, amid fears that his newspapers are losing their influence because they do not appear in the search engine’s rankings.
News Corporation plans to reverse an earlier decision to stop articles from its quality papers, such as The Times and The Sunday Times, from featuring in Google’s listings.
The effort to stop users from accessing content for free will be watered down, with Google featuring stories in search rankings from next month.
The move comes amid fears that the newspapers’ exclusion is limiting their influence and driving down advertising revenues.
Sources claim the change was a “marketing exercise”.
In the past, Mr Murdoch has lambasted Google as a “parasite” and a “content kleptomaniac” because it only allows companies to feature in search rankings if users are able to click through to at least one page without paying.
He pulled News Corp’s content from Google in 2010, at the same time as launching a strategy to charge readers for online access to its newspapers.