I know irc is rampant with unsubstantiated rumours, but this one is juicy, a source has mentioned that Google have purchased the whole Spot5 archive and that because of this Spot is stopping any end user from displaying images on the internet, in particular if they can be extracted in any way. they can be used for promotion only and only if the size is less than 1029x1024px.
Another interesting development is that SPOT Image Corporation has acquired an interest in i-cubed.
Lets see if this rumour is substantiated, if so this could be similar to Googles previous deal with digital globe, which effectively stopped anyone except Google using QuickBird imagery.
edit: This could well be true and be related to ‘Google delivers higher resolution on Google Earth through agreement with French Spot Image‘.