A while back, Google introduced the Canonical Link Element to help site owners deal with duplicate pages getting indexed in Google (such as printer friendly pages, which have almost exactly the same content as the original article).
For what it’s worth, I don’t use it on any of my sites. You can build a site without having to bodge duplicate content up.
One of my favourite blogs is Red Cardinal and they have written a great study into how to request car insurance quotes online.
With some great screenshots, they’ve shown just how awful some of the major websites make the user experience.
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