It’s plainly evident that technology will always be growing and expanding all throughout the world. And the impact of technology can be found in just about everything we do, everything we buy, and everywhere we look.
According to Google, they feel that journalism is having an extremely difficult time keeping up with the growing industry of technology. They feel that it’s their duty to help publishers keep up with the undeniable changes.
“While the demand for quality journalism is as high as it’s ever been, the business of journalism is under pressure, as publications around the world face challenges from an industry-wide transition to digital,” says Google. So the experts from Google put their heads together to try to help the situation.
This is where the Google News Initiative comes into play. The goal of Google’s new initiative is to “build a more informed world [that] is inherently tied to the reporting of journalists and news organizations.” Google plans on getting this done by creating “a healthy ecosystem of publishers producing great digital content.”
According to Google’s boasts, in just one year, they’ve managed to help different news organizations by giving out over $12.6 billion to their “partners.” They’ve also driven over 10 billion clicks to their websites. Some of those partnerships include left-leaning websites, such as The Washington Post and The New York Times.
In addition to driving traffic to the websites, Google’s initiative includes giving tens of millions of dollars into helping the publishers “strengthen their online video capabilities.” Google would do this through Google News Initiative YouTube Innovation Funding.
On YouTube’s blog, they write that funding was released to publishers to “support news organizations in building sustainable video operations” by helping them “build key capabilities, train staff on video best practices, enhance production facilities and develop formats optimized for online video.” YouTube also says that they’re working alongside news organizations in order to develop “new product features” to “tackle emerging challenges.”
It may sound promising, but the list of publishers is raising a bit of concern. Google released an infographic in which they said that they funded 87 projects with 23 different countries represented. According to Media Bias/Fact Check, among the publishers from the United States listed, over half of those that received funding from YouTube could be considered “center-left,” “left-leaning” or “far-left” news organizations. Those organizations include The Atlantic, Buzzfeed, Bloomberg, CBS News, and several others.
Fox News was the only organization on the list that could be considered a “center-right” or right-leaning media organization. There were other newsgroups that weren’t listed by Media Bias/Fact Check that can still be looked at as “left-leaning,” including Telemundo, Rogue Rocket, and Tribune Broadcasting.
The Western Journal reached out to Google to see what they had to say about this. One of Google’s spokespeople said that the application was open to anyone and every publisher was welcome, and encouraged, to apply. Oddly enough, when Google was asked which right-leaning news organizations applied for the funding, they refused to comment. According to Google, they’re doing everything they can to make “authoritative sources readily accessible.”