The Associated Press has unveiled a new scheme under which bloggers may apply for a license to quote liberally from AP reports at prices ranging from $12.50 for as little as 5 words quoted, up to $100.00 for 251 words or more.

While Patrick from Making Light scoffs, “welcome to a world in which you won™t be able to effectively criticize the press, because you™ll be required to pay to quote as few as five words from what they publish,” surely he’s aware we already live in a world where more than one major media organization routinely paraphrases items from the AP or other papers without any attribution. Apparently, the rights of some copyright holders are deemed more precious than others.

Time will tell if other wire services follow suit, but despite the challenges this will present to CSTB, I’m confident the sports blogosphere’s leading lights will soldier on. However, if someone figures out a way to collect royalties or licensing fees for already-in-circulation pictures of Jessica Alba, that would certainly be a doomsday scenario for our more popular colleagues.