(updated again below)
New rule here at the Chronicle: Never cut-and-paste a passage, however short, from an AP wire report.
It appears that the world's worst news agency has decided to start charging for quoted content at the rate of $2.50 per word. That's $12.50 for anywhere between 5 and 25 words (WTF? As if there's not a difference there?), $25 for 100, etc.
A huge amount of reports about hockey at NHL.com and in major newspapers, including our own AJC, are AP wire reports, so it's now officially too expensive for the Chronicle to quote newspapers ever again.
Here's $12.50 worth of words for you, AP: You're not, and never were, Reuters or Agence France-Presse. Go eat a bag of dicks.
That said, I'm not against wire services charging a bit for their content. I won't bore you with the details, but right now some folks and I are wrapped up in an enterprise where we're considering buying news stories from some of the more affordable wire services (usually Eastern European ones that offer good stories about werewolf sightings). I have no problem with paying for news. I have a problem with transparently greedy, frivolous-lawsuit-enabling control freakery like this. And AP is well known for its control freakery.
Reporting on games has never been a problem for the Chronicle, but if we want to write a somewhat substantive, non-profane piece that makes use of an AP interview with a Thrashers player or John Anderson or Don Waddell, well...we can't do it.
But AP sucks anyway so why does it even matter? What's happening with that Kovalchuk? Heeennngh?
UPDATE: Interesting that the AP should blow a gasket the same week that some Washington Post dude comes down hard on Gawker for (horrors) quoting his piece about something or other. I would think any semi-literate person knows that quoting is not the same thing as copying. Otherwise the shades of Petronius and H. Rider Haggard would be suing Michael Dirda.
UPDATE II: The AP has already claimed ownership of Thomas Jefferson.