Have libraries disappeared in this hypothetical future?
By the way, the guy's scenario (all the major search engines start charging the same thing simultaneously) wouldn't hold, for two reasons:
1. It would be prosecuted as an antitrust violation (price fixing).
2. Someone would eventually cut their price, and then you'd have a race to the bottom, i.e. to once again not charging anything.
You're already paying for it, you just don't get the bill directly.
Metafilter exists because people can find interesting stuff on the web, and then share it. Before search, you didn't find interesting stuff unless you happened to be at the right place at the right time and knew the right people.
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