“Online news aggregators – friend or foe?” via Hitwise Intelligence.
Like many categories, search is one of the main sources that drive traffic to the News & Media category, referring nearly 22% of visits in March 2009. Branded searches for news properties represent a large share of the top search terms driving traffic to the category. Another major source is the front pages of portals such as Yahoo! and MSN, including the personalized versions like My Yahoo and My MSN. In comparison, social networking websites and blogs referred a far smaller share of visits to News & Media websites from links or references posted on their pages.
Mini what it means: as I blogged about a few days ago, many newspaper organizations are questioning the role of Google (and other search engines & aggregators) in the Web ecosystem. Hitwise has data that shows that aggregator (if they respect “fair use”) create traffic value in the ecosystem. One question mark though: are aggregators building their brands to the detriment of news outlets? I don’t think anyone has answered that question yet.