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Is scraping a website allowed?

Posted on 2010-08-22
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Last Modified: 2013-12-14
Is it okay to scrape a website for data?

It seems to me that if the data is publically available and even the source code for the page is visible through the View Source option, that scraping the website is also allowed.  But I need to hear what others think about this first.

What could the website do to block scraping?  Legally?  Technically?  

Would they need to block so that View Source fails?  Is that even possible?

I'm curious...

Thanks,
newbieweb

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Question by:newbieweb
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6 Comments
 
LVL 11

Accepted Solution

by:
mattibutt earned 250 total points
ID: 33495591
even if you scrap the website google cache the website and its available if is no longer coming from you. blocking view-source is not possible with html.
if you are using java applet or flash then it will not be visible there are some other applications. there are techniques to disable browser saving file locally but then you are suppose to program  this for every single browser exists.
the source of website if written in server side will never be visible on the browser for instance if you used java servlet, php, .net or ruby nothing will ever be avilable publicy unless someone hacks into the webserver i am still confuse what are you trying to acheive
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LVL 2

Assisted Solution

by:ghemstrom
ghemstrom earned 250 total points
ID: 33495607
The webpage with its supporting data is protected by the publisher's copyright, which implies that you could read it but not republish it without the publishers consent. Even the linking to his page should not be done without consent if it is not evident that it is allowed...
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Author Comment

by:newbieweb
ID: 33495660
I am not trying to block my website from scraping, I am trying to find if it's allowed for me to scrape other websites.  Websites exist with data I want to import.

I wonder if that is allowed, and if it's possible just by reading the HTML.
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LVL 11

Assisted Solution

by:mattibutt
mattibutt earned 250 total points
ID: 33495668
you need author permission perior to using their content if they have forbidden the use of their content if not you can use it
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LVL 2

Assisted Solution

by:ghemstrom
ghemstrom earned 250 total points
ID: 33495756
I would say that you must have a permission if the permission is not explicitely given on the webpage.
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Author Closing Comment

by:newbieweb
ID: 33495773
Thanks.
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