During the pandemic, many media saw their revenues drop significantly. Faced with this situation, Google, through its Google News Initiative program, had launched an emergency fund to help the local media. More than 5,300 media worldwide have benefited from this funding.
And this week, the firm announces a new program that will allow Google to remunerate newspaper companies by buying licenses for content. ” Today we are announcing a licensing program to pay publishers for high quality content for a new news experience to be launched later this year,” writes Brad Bender, VP Product Management of Google News.
To launch this program, Google has signed partnerships with media in Germany, Australia and Brazil. But the firm plans to offer this media monetization program in several other countries. In addition, it is possible that the “new experience” mentioned by Google also allows the firm to offer its users content and formats comparable to those found on the Apple News + service. This new product will be available on Google News applications as well as on the firm’s Discover tab.
Google also indicates that when possible, it will allow its users free access to articles which are normally accessible only via paid subscriptions, on the publisher’s site. The cost of this access, which the Internet user must normally pay to access the content, will be paid by Google. In other words, Google wants to financially support the media (especially the big media) by paying for premium items.
These announcements may not end the tension between Google and the press, but it is still a goodwill gesture that could help some companies to compensate for the losses caused by the pandemic. “A dynamic information industry matters – perhaps more than ever now, as people look for information they can count on in the midst of a global pandemic and growing concerns about racial injustice around the world. But these events are happening at a time when the information industry is also challenged financially. We care deeply about providing access to information and supporting publishers who report on these important topics , ” says Brad Bender.