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The Google News Dilemma

timothy posted more than 9 years ago | from the to-beta-or-not-to-beta dept.

Google 310

(54)T-Dub writes "Wired has an interesting article about the status of news.google.com. It has been 3 years since its release and the major bugs have long since been ironed out, so why is it still in beta? Apparently, it's because Google hasn't been able to figure out how to make money off of it. Slapping up some Google Adwords seems like the obvious solution. The problem is that Google News has multi-million-dollar news publishers scared because of the incredibly low-cost method that Google has employed to bring us 'up the minute news.' Currently they are able to scrape the content of news sites under fair use because they are not using it for commercial purposes. Once they move away from the nonprofit, educational purposes of their system they can expect to be deluged by cease and desist orders. Before you break out the tissue box though, remember that google sent their own cease and desist orders to a Google News RSS feeder a few months back."

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310 comments

yes! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10388194)

Nth post

Re:yes! (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10388547)

Teh ppl of teh Ameriac can sux0r my dix0r

Goolgle will sort out the news. (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10388196)

rofl

Dilemma? (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10388197)

http://dictionary.reference.com/search?q=dilemma&r =67

Re:Dilemma? (1)

Sexy Bern (596779) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388229)

I thought that when I saw it.

Spell check!

Re:Dilemma? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10388531)

Was the OP talking about a misspelling? Or was he pointing out that the story fails to identify a dilemma (as defined in the dictionary), but simply talks about the current status of Google News?

Bad Grammar...? (1, Interesting)

cephyn (461066) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388207)

Am I reading it wrong, or is the title of that Wired article (Google News: Beta Not Make Money) really bad grammar? Do they have editors over there?

Re:Bad Grammar...? (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10388238)

It's a play on "betta not make money" or "better not make money"

Re:Bad Grammar...? (1)

cephyn (461066) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388294)

ooohhhhh......totally missed it. I mean, do people really pronounce "Beta" as "Betta"? I've always said it "Bay-tah"

Re:Bad Grammar...? (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10388351)

"Oh no! Beta!"

-Snake, from The Simpsons

Re:Bad Grammar...? (2, Insightful)

avronius (689343) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388391)

A large percentage of 'headline' humour falls into this type of word-play. The pronounciation isn't as important as it's proximity.

Additional forms of wordplay might include pattern repetition. An example might be "Lloyd's Lloses Llamas" as a headline if Lloyds of London had to settle a claim to a llama farmer.

If it's in print, it's not how it sounds, but how it looks.

Re:Bad Grammar...? (1)

onewing (754420) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388581)

Additional forms of wordplay might include pattern repetition. An example might be "Lloyd's Lloses Llamas" as a headline if Lloyds of London had to settle a claim to a llama farmer.

This is called alliteration. [reference.com]

Re:Bad Grammar...? (2, Interesting)

avronius (689343) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388239)

It's artistic license -

Beta ~ Betta' ~ Better

"Better not make money"

Thought this was self evident...

Re:Bad Grammar...? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10388356)

BEATEN LIKE THE WHORE U R

niggers niggeraniggers niggeraniggers niggera

Re:Bad Grammar...? (2, Funny)

ari_j (90255) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388246)

Do we have editors over here?

Face it - tech news is the field for people who really sucked at both technical writing and journalism. You're not going to find the best writers aspiring to be techno-journalists.

Re:Bad Grammar...? (-1, Redundant)

Neil Blender (555885) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388254)


(Google News: Beta Not Make Money) really bad grammar? Do they have editors over there?


I think it's a pun for Google News Better Not Make Money (or there will be serious ramifications.)

Re:Bad Grammar...? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10388256)

My guess is that they are making a play on the words "Google News: Better not make money"

Re:Bad Grammar...? (1)

Gogl (125883) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388259)

Yeah, I hear they went to the same grammar school as Slashdot editors. I mean, it's really quite a "dilema"...

Re:Bad Grammar...? (1)

cephyn (461066) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388330)

ROFL didn't even see that....jeeeeez...that isn't bad grammar though, its just a horribly obvious misspelling.

Re:Bad Grammar...? (1)

Wm_K (761378) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388266)

must be a word joke...

you had to read it as: Better not make money or Betta not make money or Beta not make money

Re:Bad Grammar...? (5, Funny)

nomadic (141991) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388298)

Am I reading it wrong, or is the title of that Wired article (Google News: Beta Not Make Money) really bad grammar? Do they have editors over there?

Tarzan like job at wired but miss jungle.

Re:Bad Grammar...? (1)

mlknowle (175506) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388404)

er, it's a pun.

"better" not make money... "beta" not make money...

yea, a bad pun. but not an error

Re:Bad Grammar...? (5, Insightful)

SiliconEntity (448450) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388421)

"Google News: Beta Not Make Money" is a pun!

"Google News Better Not Make Money" or else they'll be sued because it will have become commercial use, see?

Re:Bad Grammar...? (1)

perlwhiz (451770) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388434)

Could it be a play on words for "Betta (as in Better) Not Make Money"? (Not that it's much better grammatically :)

Re:Bad Grammar...? (0, Redundant)

poot_rootbeer (188613) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388446)

Am I reading it wrong, or is the title of that Wired article (Google News: Beta Not Make Money) really bad grammar?

I interpret it as an attempted pun. "beta" = "better". As in, "Google better not make money off Google News".

I disagree (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10388219)

One major bug still exists -- the bot cannot separate news from opinion and other trash. It's a sloppy orgy of miscellaneous content that should somehow be more carefully organized before being released.

Re:I disagree (3, Insightful)

LS (57954) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388279)

Hmm, you sound like a troll. All news sources are more or less biased in one direction or another, even if simply by ommitting information. "Opinion" pieces are simply news articles that pass some arbitrary threshold of bias.

LS

Re:I disagree (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10388295)


One major bug still exists -- the bot cannot separate news from opinion and other trash. It's a sloppy orgy of miscellaneous content that should somehow be more carefully organized before being released.


Neither can CBS, FOX, CNN, NPR ...

Re:I disagree (1)

El (94934) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388375)

It's a sloppy orgy of miscellaneous content that should somehow be more carefully organized before being released. Sounds like a general description of every website on the web... why should google news be any different?

Re:I disagree (2, Insightful)

thejackhmr (643947) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388493)

Google is a billion dollar company now -- they could at least poke at the issue. It's easy to see there are certain keywords and semantics that together are generally unique the editorial style. Surely there is a way for a bot to tell the difference. Afterall, you and I can tell the difference -- aren't we just big squishy bots ourselves? For god sakes ten female howler monkeys could devise a bot that could distinguish this this editorial [delmarvanow.com] from this news story. [kansascity.com]

Re:I disagree (3, Interesting)

Hobbex (41473) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388445)

I recently sent this to their "suggest-source" address:

I suggest that you add the following news source:

http://www.kcna.co.jp/index-e.htm

to Google news. It is the official news service of the Democratic
Peoples Republic of Korea.

If not, I am wondering how this is different from Xinhua, another
propaganda organization of a dictorial government, whose articles are
often featured highly on Google news?

Re:I disagree (2, Interesting)

fdiskne1 (219834) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388465)

Earlier today, it was linked to a parody story, but the Google News page linked to it as if it was a legitimate news article.

Re:I disagree (1)

Country_hacker (639557) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388497)

I can agree to that, I got caught a few days ago by a summary on the news.google front page that read "White House says George W Bush's IQ 68!".
Turns out it was a satire piece, but it was definitely a WTF? moment.

Re:I disagree (2, Insightful)

mcc (14761) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388523)

Hmm, do you actually read Google News? In my experience they're generally very good about identifying and tagging all links to op-ed or editorial pieces with a little (opinion) tag.

Err, wait, acutally, now that I look, I can't find any (opinion) tags anywhere on Google News today, even in searches for editorials. The (press release) tags still show up but not the (opinion)s. Hmm, maybe it's considered still in beta because they're still experimenting with changing features on a daily basis?

This has been known on Slashdot for some time. (5, Funny)

chill (34294) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388223)

1. Create some cool web portal things
2. Drive traffic to it
3. ??
4. Profit!

Google, like the rest of the world, is still stuck on figuring out #3. :-)

-Charles

Re:This has been known on Slashdot for some time. (1)

jacksonj04 (800021) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388281)

3. Wait until you get featured on /. and let the cream of the web community figure it out for you.

Re:This has been known on Slashdot for some time. (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10388350)

I'm sorry, you use the words "Slashdot" and "cream of the web community" in the same sentence. Hasn't anyone told you that getting modded up as "funny" doesn't get you karma?

Re:This has been known on Slashdot for some time. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10388518)


mmm, creamy...

Re:This has been known on Slashdot for some time. (2, Interesting)

hackstraw (262471) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388314)


3. Ask the porn preview portals how they make $$$.

Re:This has been known on Slashdot for some time. (1)

Bullet-Dodger (630107) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388514)

Which is funny but it doesn't exactly apply. They have it figured out, the text ads, and it's working quite well for them. It's just that there's a snag that prevents them from doing the same with Google News.

Re:This has been known on Slashdot for some time. (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10388517)

I like the SouthPark approach myself.

Step 1 - Steal underpants
Step 2 - ???
Step 3 - PROFIT!

Kyle: What's step 2?
Google/Underpants Gnome: Step 1 - Steal Underpants
Step 2 - ???
Step 3 - PROFIT!

gmail content (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10388230)

well they can still take stories out of your gmail account and present those as news

Re:gmail content (2, Funny)

Doesn't_Comment_Code (692510) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388425)

well they can still take stories out of your gmail account and present those as news


And in other news...

Your sister just broke it off with that jerk she was dating.

And your mother's VCR didn't work on the timed record setting last night. Please let her know if any of your friends have "Trading Spouses" on tape.

Google web-scrapes the latest news (4, Insightful)

stratjakt (596332) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388237)

Then threatens to sue anyone who web-scrapes them.

Oh, but one guy said something warm and fuzzy once about "do no harm" so they're a Good(tm) giant, soulless corporation, like Apple or IBM.

Oh, and thanks for GMail. ABSOLUTE GENIOUS. I was searching high and low for a way to introduce more advertisements into my e-mail, and Google delivered.

Re:Google web-scrapes the latest news (1)

(54)T-Dub (642521) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388359)

I love my gmail account. Makes searching through old emails painless. Not to mention the awesome spam filter. I mean, it's a free webmail, you have to expect ads, and the google ads are not intrusive at all. It's not like they turn words in your emails into links or something. In fact, I'm suprised hotmail hasn't started doing that already.

Oh, and don't even get me started about the ease of use. Would you like a gmail invite to try it out?

Re:Google web-scrapes the latest news (1)

Threni (635302) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388575)

> Would you like a gmail invite to try it out?

My belief is that gmail will never come out of beta - they'll just give everyone on it 100 invites. Still, i know no-one who has an account yet. I wouldn't mind one.

Re:Google web-scrapes the latest news (1)

tekunokurato (531385) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388383)

Er, did their cease and desist notice threaten suit?

Like the submission said, they can scrape and list the original content under fair use, but they are and should be worried about the legality of syndicating it to a third party.

Re:Google web-scrapes the latest news (1)

jfengel (409917) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388452)

I don't believe that they're web-scraping. I believe that they're subscribing to news feeds from those sources. The news sources don't object; I believe that they sign up. Which means that they don't have to scrape; the get the results pre-digested. Most of those sites don't offer open RSS feeds; they offer them only to Google.

It tends to drive people to those news sites, since Google doesn't report the whole story. That's why the news sites participate: it gets eyeballs to their ads (and maybe to subscribe).

But Google doesn't wish to be screen-scraped. They're not delivering RSS; they're delivering a web page with ads. So it's not hypocritical; they're offering a service and asking that you not get in the way of their business model. If you don't like it, don't go.

Re:Google web-scrapes the latest news (1)

stratjakt (596332) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388480)

But they're not offering a (commercial) service and it's not part of their business model. Google news is beta. See the article submission for more details.

Whether Google "wishes" to be screen-scraped is irrelevant, I don't see how there's a thing they can do about it, except further clog the legal system with "my business model don't work arrest that man" bullshit.

This Post (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10388245)

Is Beta... until I make some money that is.

Their return is in the branding (4, Insightful)

stomv (80392) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388255)

So what if Google News doesn't make money? If it's another great product by Google (tm?), then it still reinforces the idea that google does great things.

The financial return from the news portion doesn't have to come in dollars. It can simply come from "good will" and "brand value." Those are items that show up on the balance sheet too.

[rumor]Perhaps google will buy out a news entity in the future[/started]

None of that shows up on a balance sheet (4, Informative)

alexhmit01 (104757) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388338)

No they do not.

Good Will on a Balance Sheet is the "excess" paid for a company when the acquisition is accounted for using the Purchase Method (the only one now allowed). You take all the acquired company's assets, price them to "fair market value" and make them assets on your book, then whatever premium you paid is "good will." You used to have to amortize Good Will over 40 years (because it isn't real), but now you get to keep it as "brand value" or whatever, and if it ever becomes worth less, you can write it down then.

HOWEVER, developing your own brand value, you can't put that on the balance sheet because how would you value it? Do you think that Google can just say, hmm, Google News is really cool, let's add another $10m this quarter to the good will account. Lookie here, $10m in revenue because we increased this asset?

Before stating that things show up somewhere in financials and give armchair advice, you might want to research what they are.

Good Will on a balance sheet is VERY DIFFERENT from what Good Will is in conventional thought.

Alex

Re:Their return is in the branding (2, Informative)

Rude Turnip (49495) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388402)

"It can simply come from "good will" and "brand value." Those are items that show up on the balance sheet too."

(I do a little SFAS 141/142 work and know a couple things about this.)

Not exactly. Goodwill only shows up on the balance sheet as the excess over book value you paid for another company in an acquisition. "Brand value" is just a subset of that. Your own company's goodwill is inherently reflected on the *income statement*, to the extent that you are generating earnings.

If another company came along and bought Google, then Google's "brand value" would be reflected in the goodwill account of the acquiring company.

Re:Their return is in the branding (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10388431)

"Goodwill" on a balance sheet refers to the difference between the amount paid for a business and the value of said business' assets. So if I spend $100 on a business that has assets of $80 I end up with $20 of "Goodwill".

Re:Their return is in the branding (1)

acq3 (315236) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388481)

Actually they don't show up on the balance sheet. GAAP accounting still has it's flaws and this is one. Google will eventually feel pressure to monetize its investment, maybe they will resist. Let's all hope...

Re:Their return is in the branding (2, Informative)

C60 (546704) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388486)

Sounds like you're stuck in 1999. That's very much a dotcom sensibility. Use funds from other departments/projects to feed the loss leader until it magically generates revenue.

IMHO I'm *glad* the guys at Google haven't taken it out of beta yet. It shows they've learned from the stupidity of the dotcom bubble, and are unwilling to threaten the rest of their organization until each and every project can stand on its own.

And before you start yelling about how much money Google may or may not have, the sentiment of banking on "brand value" for companies that are largely based on IP with no (or few) physical products is dangerous these days. In fact its always been dangerous. And when it comes down to the SEC, "good will" and "brand value" appear in their reports, but not on the balance sheets, at least none that I've seen.

Google is making a smart move. The R&D they did for Google News is applicable to other products in their core offering, its not a loss. Throwing it out onto the market before it can generate revenue on its own will immediately generate a loss for them on their balance sheets.

[jedi mindtrick]This is not the dotcom you are looking for. Move along.[/jedi mindtrick]

Make money off it? Why? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10388260)

So, it's in beta because they haven't figured out how to make money. They can't start charging money for it anyway, since it would no longer be Fair Use.

So, why don't they just use it as a loss leader freebie to keep traffic coming to the site? All they have to do is delete the "Beta" part, after all!

Still in beta because... (3, Insightful)

Lifix (791281) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388301)

Google news is still in beta because it can't differentiate between real news and editorials. As much as I like google news, I get most of my news from rss feeds (slashdot/scifiwire ect...) As far as I am concerned, Google needs to either decide to stay nonprofit with the google news, OR pay out the cash and sell adds.

Now that I reread this, it's gonna get modded down... oh well. :)

Re:Still in beta because... (0, Offtopic)

nomadic (141991) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388348)

get most of my news from rss feeds (slashdot

So you're on the cutting edge of 3 months ago, good going...

Re:Still in beta because... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10388507)

Sphincter boy.

Could they... (3, Interesting)

Chris Burke (6130) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388321)

slap some adwords on there, and then feed the content providers portions of the ad revenue based on some model, click throughs or whatnot? I know online news providers are struggling themselves, and it would incentivize them not to require registration (since I avoid the google links that require a subscription). Yeah, that's obvious enough that they've probably thought of it. Maybe it wouldn't be profitable enough for them, or for the content providers.

Re:Could they... (1)

vettemph (540399) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388569)


slap some adwords on there

and we will go elsewhere for news :)

Besides, google news beta is part of googles profit motive. Google News Beta is an advertisment in itself to have you return to the google brand on a daily basis, sign up for an email account, use adwords for your own business. That means it is no longer fair use. Google must cease and desist. Stop trying to hide behind a phony "beta". mod me down for i speak from my arse. :)

AdWords may not be good enough (4, Interesting)

costas (38724) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388324)

I run a similar, albeit personalized service [memigo.com] (which predates Google News actually) and I'll have to pipe in and say that I doubt that the real reason for the absense of ads on GN is that Google is afraid: first of all, GN drives traffic to news sites, and more traffic means more money for the originating site. Excluding yourself from GN is basically handing money to your competition.

I think the real problem with GN, is that context sensitive advertising does not work for news. I've been running AdSense ads on memigo.com for a while now and Google never managed to keep up: by the time they spidered the site, the content had changed. Now, let's assume that they can solve this problem since GN is their own site, and they can update immediately: which advertisers are going to rely on context ads for news items? Imagine a story popping up on the US feed about say a Ford Explorer flipping over, with nice big Ford ads next to it: a waste of money and space. And if you try to go the other way, showing ads only for positive pieces of news (hard, but let's say it's doable) you'll be accused of bias and selling out.

So, the only reasonable choice is to sell non-context ads on GN. It could happen, but I think Google likes a challenge; they'll mine GN clicks and probably do personalized ads before they go back to plain-old ads...

Re:AdWords may not be good enough (1)

Fo0eY (546716) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388458)

yup yup

google adwords suck really bad for my news site too
always out of date, and seems to pick weirdly random keywords to base all its ads on

if I was actually trying to make money, google adwords on a news site is definitely not the way to go

Re:AdWords may not be good enough (1)

cpeterso (19082) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388559)


Sounds like Google needs a real-time AdSense. Does anyone do real-time ad personalization? hmmm! (wheels turning inside head) :)

Don't underestimate Google... (5, Insightful)

Hobbex (41473) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388325)


Obviously there is a plan here, and it is very simple. Google are simply going to let the service run as beta, until it has enough users (and it is getting there) that the shoe is on the other foot: and the news providers will WANT to be screen scraped.

I mean, when news pages start seeing that 90% of their article reads are referred from news.google.com, or that do reader research and find that Google News is the number one way that people learn to read their site, then Google can start gladly removing anybody who asks. I have started reading several newssites regularly that I first found via Google News.

Found a better one anyway (1, Interesting)

jobugeek (466084) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388327)

Findory [findory.org]

It personalizes the articles you get based on the past article you clicked on. Pretty cool and useful.

Re:Found a better one anyway (1)

owlstead (636356) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388551)

Findory could not be found. Please try again later.

Try findory.com though, your luck might improve.

Re:Found a better one anyway (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10388574)

I don't particularly like the idea of my news scraper deciding that I don't want to see world events or business news just because I've been reading a lot of tech articles lately...

Still seems like a good thing (4, Interesting)

Omega1045 (584264) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388334)

It seems to me like Google has always done cool first, money second, and since the cool worked so well the money just seemed to follow. If I was to advise them (like they would listen to a non-PhD programmer like me) I would say to just leave it free and open like it is now. It is a very popular site, and they can always use it as good PR and as a linking mechanism to the rest of the Googleverse.

Teh Googel News Dilema!!1!!111!! (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10388345)

I really wish Slashdot editors would spell-check...

So? (4, Insightful)

chrisgeleven (514645) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388358)

I don't understand why news sites would have an issue with Google News.

Think about it...

1) Google isn't copying the full-text of an article. At most, its the headline and a paragraph...most of the time it is the headline and a sentence.

2) Since Google doesn't post the entire article, you have to click a link that takes you directly to the publisher of the article. Google News is therefor generating millions of direct hits per month to various news sites.

3) These millions of direct hits to these news sites means more advertising dollars for THOSE sites. Since I click link on a NYT Headline listed on Google News, I view *gasp* the NYT web site and its particular article. Which means, any ad dollars I generate there go to the NYT. The horror, the NYT is making more money thanks to Google News then without it (not to mention spreading its name out to more readers, who could purchase even subscriptions).

So am I missing something? Why would news publishers have issues with a site sending millions of hits per month at the news publisher's sites, generating far more money then if Google News didn't exist.

Re:So? (1)

bs_testability (784693) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388503)

the best/worst thing about google news is that they offer alternatives for the same story in addition to the highest ranked one allowing me to avoid fox altogether!

Re:So? (3, Insightful)

Camulus (578128) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388573)

There are only so many people on the internet. Let's say your cnn and cnn.com was the best way for most people to access news (not saying it is, but thing hypothetical here). Now, let's say that a web site sets up a portal that does direct back to your site, but also directs links to hundreds of other sources. While you can get readers from google news, it also provides an easy way for readers of your site to start browsing through 100 other news sites they didn't even know existed. So, for smaller sites, it is good. For bigger sites, maybe not so good.

Take the Strategy of "The Economist" (0, Troll)

reporter (666905) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388360)

Quality news sources like "The Washington Post" and the "Los Angeles Times" should follow the lead of "The Economist" and the "Wall Street Journal". The last 2 journals charge a fee for browsing their articles. The quality of these 2 journals is so high that people are willing to pay for reading their articles. Indeed, the subscription rate of "The Economist" is increasing.

Google does not produce links to "Economist" articles or WSJ articles via the New page. However, via the regular search page, you sometimes see links to such articles. If you clink on the links, they take you to a page requesting that you pay for a subscription to the journals. There is no cached version of them.

On the other hand, if you are a low-quality journal like "New York Times", then you have plenty to fear.

By the way, do try Yahoo News [yahoo.com], which is much better than Google News.

I have an idea (1)

TheKubrix (585297) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388362)

They should make TWO news sites. One that takes contributions/payments/whatever from news sites, and that can be used to "help" their stories get "bumped". Then on the SECOND news site, keep it completly "evil free". Oh wait, thats just for my amusement, nvm.

still buggy, (4, Interesting)

funkdid (780888) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388369)

this morning for example, the fed judge struck down part of the Patriot Act. It wasn't on the main page!? So I searched Google news and it was there but under "CollegeSports.com, NY - 22 hours ago On the heels of what head coach Tim Landis described as Bucknell's most complete effort during his 15-game tenure, the Bison open Patriot League play this week ... "

Better still was that the aformentioned Bison's (who were on there way to there 3rd straight win) had a whopping 10 articles written about them, the Patriot Act story only had 4 articles listed. I had to take a screen cap and e-mail it out to people. It was hillarious, I guess none of the news orgs had picked up the AP story at that point.

Subscrtiption links are NOT the answer (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10388373)

Those things are annoying, and deceptive. They have GOT to go. If you have to ask yourself how to profit off the news, then maybe you're not sparkling example of corporate good will everyone says...

Aggregate news sites are the future, because unfortunately, no single media outlet can be trusted with the burden of relaying reality anymore.

So what. (1, Interesting)

Doesn't_Comment_Code (692510) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388378)

I honestly don't think Google should be sued for presenting news from other sources. After all, Google News is just summarizing the pages it finds and linking to them... just like regular Google does. In fact, many webpages get additional hits because of Google News. It isn't really at all different from any other search engine except that the contents are limited to current events.

That being said, I know there's a difference between how things should be and how things are. So you don't need to explain why someone can sue them. No one ever promised you couldn't be successfully sued for millions of dollars for no good reason.

Zen. (1)

torpor (458) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388406)


If they're going to use "Ads" to generate "revenue" from what should, in all conscience, be considered a public resource (since its public news, from public sources), then they ought to -really- sell Ads.

What I mean is, open the Ad-space to *all*, not just multi-million-dollar accounts.

If the only $-proposition to be made from Google harvesting and data-crunching publicly sourced material is founded in their unique ability to go from "idea -> Working System -> Cultural Meme -> Brand Reality", then they ought to be being really agressive about it, and working out how to use the culture of their audience, to exploit the Ad-space.

Give me the ability to easily push a message to a few million users on a Friday afternoon, give me good stats about it and reasons to want to use Google to push that message a couple times a day. I'd use that, hell yeah. (I'm an active [ampfea.org] online artist .. a guaranteed audience of 10,000 people around the world on a Friday afternoon is a serious reason to write a new song..)

All Google need do is implement a "no single Ad twice in the same 24 hours" (or less) and open up a no-nonsense portion of their massaged content to a public RSS-style feed, and they've got a money-maker ...

Can be a loss leader (3, Insightful)

kbahey (102895) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388418)

Google News is still valuable to Google, even if they cannot make money off it.

It is a free service provided for the public that give Google great publicity and a positive image. It does build their brand.

So, even if you consider it as a loss leader in marketingspeak, it is still valuable to them.

Now, as an alternate strategy, if they start providing ads for the news outlets themselves? Would the news outlets complain then?

Mo Money Google (2, Funny)

Mulletproof (513805) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388478)

"Apparently, it's because Google hasn't been able to figure out how to make money off of it.

At $135 per share, I'm thinking somebody has fgured out how to make money off of it ;)

Why would the sites complain? (4, Interesting)

SiliconEntity (448450) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388499)

I don't understand why the sites would complain. Take the top news story there right now:
Bush, Kerry Hope to Win Voters in Debate [go.com]
ABC News- 1 hour ago
CORAL GABLES, Fla. Sept. 29, 2004 - Two candidates, two very different tasks for the first presidential debate. John Kerry has to convince voters they should throw President Bush out of office for his actions ...
You don't get any useful information from that excerpt. You're going to click on the link, which will take you through to the ABC News page. And that page has got ads on it! I just learned how Olay face cream can improve my complexion. So because of Google News, ABC got a page view for its advertiser that it wouldn't have gotten otherwise. The same with the other pages that Google links to.

It seems that all Google has to do is to get permission from sites to link to their stories. The ones that refuse are giving up a source of revenue. Why would any commercial site not want the most popular site in the world to link to them? Jeez, Google should be charging sites for the right to be indexed by Google News.

Why not adwords from the news sources? (2, Insightful)

kabocox (199019) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388510)

I've not really thought of google competing with news sources. Why? Because the first thing that I do is open a tab into that news site. Honestly, I don't trust google for news. They are o.k. for getting an overview at a few things that may have been unknown to you. Depending on google for news is like depending on slashdot for balanced reporting and good editing.

That's odd because... (4, Interesting)

jdog1016 (703094) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388521)

a search [google.com] on google.com will bring up relevant news articles, and yet also displays ads just like any other search...

How is that any different than displaying ads on news.google.com itself? In any case, because they are already displaying these News Results, seems to me that they are *already* profiting from Google News.

It sounds as if (2, Funny)

Enrico Pulatzo (536675) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388544)

the best plan to make money is to hold other news sites hostage. Good ole extortion, that's a great way to make money. Offer to make Google News worse if the 10 largest competitors pay up proper.

Google lawyers never told "Don't be evil" (3, Interesting)

smclean (521851) | more than 9 years ago | (#10388578)

It's hard to feel sorry for Google, though. In April, lawyers for the billion-dollar search engine company that Sergey Brin and Larry Page founded sent their own cease-and-desist letter to Julian Bond, a British programmer who had created customized RSS feeds from Google News.

Ironically, the letter informed Bond that Google does not permit "webmasters to display Google News headlines on their sites."

Apparently someone forgot to tell Google's lawyers about the whole "Don't be evil" thing. How can they think that people accessing google news via RSS is bad for them, especiallysince google is not making money from google news via advertising?
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