Reuters: Google News re-opens in Spain after eight-year shutdown. “Alphabet… reopened Google News in Spain on Wednesday, eight years after it shut down the service because of a Spanish rule forcing the company and other news aggregators to pay publishers for using snippets of their news.”
TechCrunch: Google News launches a new desktop design with topic customization. “Google News is refreshing its desktop site with a new design that allows you to track global and local news on one screen. The redesign puts Your Briefing, Local news, and Top Picks section on a single page in different columns so it’s easier to catch up with news on topics and regions you care about.”
RNZ: NZME makes final deal with Google about supplying news. “The pair have agreed on the terms for the supply of content to Google’s News Showcase, which they started in March. Chief executive Michael Boggs said the deal would support its digital development and journalism in the country.”
Bloomberg: Google Avoids More Fines After Ending French Dispute Over News. “The French competition authority said Google significantly improved commitments it initially offered last year, which now address its concerns and have been made binding, ending the case. The Alphabet Inc. unit made promises last year in the wake of a 500 million euro ($527 million) fine for failing to follow an earlier order to thrash out fair deals with publishers. The company also agreed to withdraw its challenge against the penalty.”
NiemanLab: Should Google pay for news in Brazil? It’s complicated. “No solution is ideal. The worst thing that journalists can do, however, is to step aside and let media owners and platforms decide among themselves. The solution should not allow Big Tech to remain free and unregulated, nor should it force it to pay the same media owners that have lobbied against diversity in media. Somewhere in between — and with ample and public and transparent debate — there is a middle ground to be found.”
CBC: Google warns online news bill could make it subsidize biased news outlets. “Google is warning that the federal government’s online news bill could force it to subsidize non-authoritative or biased news sources, such as the Russian state-sponsored news agency Sputnik. But the organization representing Canada’s news media industry says the wording of the bill is tight and specifically excludes outlets that promote the interests of an organization.”
National Post (Canada): Law to make tech companies like Google pay for Canadian news content to be tabled within days
National Post (Canada): Law to make tech companies like Google pay for Canadian news content to be tabled within days. “Heritage Minister Pablo Rodriguez is poised to bring forward legislation within days to make digital giants compensate Canadian media outlets for reusing their news content. The bill is modelled on a law in Australia making tech companies, such as Google, pay for news content on their platforms.”
Brookings Institution: The surprising performance of Kremlin propaganda on Google News. “Over the past week, the Kremlin’s propaganda apparatus consistently returned the top search result for two key terms related to the conflict—’DPR’ and ‘LPR,’ abbreviations for the break-away regions in Ukraine’s east, the Donetsk People’s Republic and the Luhansk People’s Republic, respectively. On five of the past seven days, searches for ‘DPR’ and ‘LPR’ on Google News surfaced Russian state media as the top result. On each of the past seven days, for the same searches, Russian state media was among the top two results.”
Reuters: Watchdog says Google offers to exclude Showcase from general searches in Germany. “Google has offered to remove Google News Showcase content from general search results in Germany in a bid to end a competition inquiry, the country’s Federal Cartel Office said on Wednesday.”
CNET: Google News to return to Spain early next year. “Google News will soon be available again in Spain after the country amended a law that imposed fees on news aggregators for using local publishers’ content.”
Japan Times: Google launches News Showcase service in Japan, will pay fees to 40 publishers. “Google LLC expanded its News Showcase service to Japan on Thursday, enabling users to view headlines from more than 40 Japanese newspapers and news agencies that each collect a licensing fee from the tech giant. Unlike news content that appears through Google searches, the service allows news organizations to curate and package their coverage on the News Showcase page or app.”
My Ancestors and Me: Use Google Books to Search Google News Archives. “After changes at Google News Archive a number of years ago it became almost impossible to perform an OCR search of a particular newspaper. I resorted to waiting till I knew a date for a birth, death, marriage, or other event, then looked at the newspaper for that date and a few days after, hoping to see more information, knowing, of course, there was always a chance I would miss something. But there’s another way to search Google’s newspaper collection, learned from Lisa Louise Cook’s post, 10 Surprising Things You Can Find at Google Books.” This is amazing! The interface is 500% better than Google News.
Search Engine Land: Google tries to answer publishers questions on visibility concerns in Google News
From Search Engine Land, an explanation as to why Google News has turned into a tire fire: Google tries to answer publishers questions on visibility concerns in Google News. “For the past couple of years, ever since Google launched the new Google News Publisher Center in December 2019, Google discontinued the application process to appear in these Google News. Before December 2019, publishers would fill out a form to apply to be in Google News. You would then get an email accepting your application or rejecting it, you were in Google News or out. That changed after December 2019 when Google changed the process to be completely automated, without human intervention.”
Ars Technica: Rupert Murdoch’s answer to Google News is dead after only 18 months. “In August of 2019, Rupert Murdoch’s News Corp announced that it was developing Knwez, its own ‘conservative friendly’ alternative to Google News. Knewz went live without much fanfare in January of 2020, and officially died today, less than eighteen months later.” As you might imagine, I see literally hundreds of headlines a day (possibly more. I try not to think about it.) I saw zero coverage of Knewz. Jelly got more coverage in the part of media that makes it to my Google Alerts.