Google serves as a digital newsstand where people access the news. It links the public to news providers.
However, unlike newsstands on streets, the tech giant is active in providing support to news organizations. Some of its initiative includes the following:
Sending traffic through its products
Google sends 24 billion visits to news websites globally every month and helps people discover publishers’ content via Google Search.
Aside from sending traffic to online news sites, the tech giant emphasizes the value of context, original reporting, and battling disinformation.
“But the 24 billion visits that we send are just part of the picture. It is important to us that we’re providing context to our readers and elevating the original reporting and [fighting] misinformation,” Google Asia Pacific’s Director of News Partnerships Kate Beddoe said.
Supporting revenue of news publishers
Google’s advertising platforms power many news organizations’ digital advertising businesses and help publishers of all sizes make money online.
Elevating quality journalism
The tech company has also developed a program called Google News Initiative (GNI) to help newsrooms become sustainable.
Under this is the Journalism Emergency Relief which supported more than 5,000 newsrooms during the COVID-19 pandemic.
In the Philippines, the relief program has helped seven news outlets.
To support underrepresented communities, the tech company has provided financial support and opportunities for news organizations with the News Equity Fund.
“More broadly on the Google News Initiative, since its launch in 2018 to 2020, GNI has committed to $33 million in funding to support over 1,000 news partners across 32 countries in APAC (Asia Pacific),” said Google Asia Pacific’s News Lab head Irene Jay Liu.
Liu also noted that they had trained more than 171,000 journalists in Asia under their program since 2015.
Creating a thriving news industry through partnerships
To help Southeast Asian news organizations improve their data capabilities, the search engine giant also offers a Data and Insights Launchpad training program.
Aside from this, the tech company launched the Asia Pacific GNI Innovation Challenge. This aims to empower news outlets globally by supporting projects that foster innovation.
Google is also active in partnerships related to fact-checking.
In the Philippines, Google supported #FactsFirstPH and Tsek.ph, ahead of the recent presidential election. These collaborative fact-checking projects include news organizations, civil society, the academe, and business organizations to counter disinformation.
“These are just a few examples of the ways that we are working in partnership with news organizations, individual journalists, and fact-checkers to help them evolve their business models to drive sustainable growth,” Liu said.
“Through these efforts, we aim to also empower these organizations with new technologies to elevate quality journalism and support high-quality information that our readers and audiences need,” she added.