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Google News Initiative

A new licensing program to support the Canadian news industry



In our biggest move yet to support the future of journalism, we are launching a news experience called Google News Showcase. In the first three years alone, we will pay more than USD$1 billion globally to publishers creating and curating high-quality content for this product, with plans to extend beyond that as part of our long-term commitment to supporting the news industry. News Showcase will first roll out to readers in Brazil and Germany and will expand to other countries in the coming months where local frameworks support these partnerships. We are thrilled to announce today that this program is coming to Canada. 

News Showcase builds on our existing news licensing program, which is already paying publishers for quality journalism and other news-related efforts like Subscribe with Google and Web Stories. Our new service will give readers in Canada more context and perspective on important stories in the news and drive high value traffic to a publisher’s site. 

We’ve already signed partnerships for News Showcase with nearly 200 leading publications across Germany, Brazil, Argentina, Canada, the U.K. and Australia with more countries to follow. 

Our Canadian publisher partners say this is a positive shift in direction. “We are always exploring new ways to attract readers to our network of local, community based media sites,” says Jeff Elgie, CEO of Village Media. “The new Google News Showcase program will allow us to drive meaningful new revenue for our business, help us further develop our audience, and provide trusted, in-depth news to our readers in partnership with Google.” 

Narcity Media sees the value of extending their reach and increasing revenue with the new Google program. “Finding new ways to reach our core audience and showcase our premium content in a curated environment, is a top priority,” comments Chuck Lapointe, CEO of Narcity Media. “Google’s partnership in news will give us access to new markets and provide additional commercial benefits.” 

Today’s launch of News Showcase is not only about our substantial financial commitment, but also about a different kind of online news experience—one that will benefit from the editorial curation by award-winning newsrooms to provide readers with more insight on the stories that matter, and let publishers develop deeper relationships with their audiences. 

More About Google News Showcase 

News Showcase is made up of story panels that will appear initially in Google News on Android. The product will launch soon on Google News on iOS, coming to Google Discover and Search in the future. These panels give participating publishers the ability to package the stories that appear in readers’ news feeds, providing deeper storytelling and more context through features like timelines, bullets and related articles. Other components like video, audio and daily briefings will come next. 

News Showcase is distinct from our other news products because it leans on the editorial choices individual publishers make about which stories to show readers and how to present them. Publishers can also bring more detail and context in their own voice—summarizing a complicated story, including an explainer, or adding an interview with a person at the center of a long-running story. The panels are designed to represent a publisher’s individual brand within Google’s products to help readers recognize the unique value and perspective these publishers bring to top stories. And a simple click will take you to the publisher’s site. 

These panels will appear in personalized feeds along with other ranked content. Readers will be able to browse content from participating publishers and follow specific publishers whose stories they want to see more prominently featured. News Showcase is also working with partners to pay for free access to select paywalled articles on a publisher’s site. 

Long term commitment 

The launch of News Showcase and our commitment to spend significant amounts for quality content will contribute towards the overall sustainability of our news partners and builds on our other efforts to help the industry. Those include not just the 24 billion visits we send to news websites globally every month, but also the many projects of the Google News Initiative, including emergency funding for over 5,600 local publishers globally, 150 of which were Canadian, to help with the impact of COVID-19. Over the course of the pandemic we also waived ad serving fees for news publishers globally and drove initiatives to support local news through partnerships and our own marketing efforts. And we recently announced the Digital Growth Program aimed at small and medium-sized publishers. 

As a company whose mission focuses on making information universally accessible, we share a common cause with publishers in creating a more informed world. Alongside other companies, governments and civic society groups, we want to play our part by helping journalism in the 21st Century not only survive, but thrive.