Ever since the explosion of digital news, publishers have complained that as soon as an original story is published, other sites imitate it and often they are capable of driving more traffics than the original site. Yesterday, Google announced that in order to mitigate the issue they have made changes to its Google Search Algorithm. This new algorithm will give advantage to “original reporting.”
Richard Gingras, Google’s Vice President of News, in the blog, said that the new algorithm will give better recognition to the original report. He elaborated “This means readers interested in the latest news can find the story that started it all and publishers can benefit from having their original reporting more widely seen.”
Richard Gingras revealed in a phone interview that this shift is in the company’s own interest. “We do everything here with Google Search and Google News to continue to earn and retain the trust of our users.”
Due to their influence over the digital news industry, recently, Google and some other major tech platforms have come under scrutiny and federal antitrust investigations. A trade organization called “The News Media Alliance” became sharply critical of the tech companies and lobbied lawmakers for a limited antitrust exemption. This exemption would enable outlets to bargain collectively with the platforms. Very soon a number of platforms signaled their willingness to work with publishers.
In order to highlight their articles and split revenue, the Apple News app finalized some major deals with a handful of media companies. The list includes names like Condé Nast. On the other hand, Facebook has initiated to license articles from major publishers and display them under the “News” tab.
Chief Executive of The News Media Alliance, David Chavern welcomed Google’s announcement. Yesterday, in a phone interview, Mr. Chavern said “Google search results have not rewarded investments in journalism. If we can get to a place where they do better, that’s good.”