The popular startup question and answer service Quora only allows the largest search engines to index its site. As Gabe Rivera of Techmeme pointed out yesterday, its robots.txt file explicitly grants Google, Bing, Blekko and other big players access, but excludes everyone else. If large sites had these restrictions back when Google was starting, it might never have succeeded and we’d still be stuck with Altavista. As more publishers move to this whitelist approach, are they stifling innovation?
via ReadWriteWeb – Quora Blocks Startup Search Engines. This is an awful move by a startup to prevent other startups from being able to access data and gain the ability to search a site. As the argument goes, imagine if Google was blocked when it originally started?