Google has launched the Google News Showcase initiative in the Czech Republic with the plan to pay for news content from Czech media, with Czechia serving as the first country in Central and Eastern Europe where the company is launching this cooperation.
As a part of the plan, Google concluded licensing agreements with five publishing houses.
Google News Showcase will make a portion of paid articles on the websites of cooperating publishers available to readers. In addition to funding from Google, publishers will gain another opportunity to reach new audiences and potential subscribers. Specifically, publishing houses Echo Media, Economia, Forum 24, Internet Info, and N media joined the Google News and the Discover channel.
In the past, Google has favored left-leaning news in its search results, and the vast majority of news companies represented globally in Google News Showcase are center-left or left-wing news outlets.
In the Google News Showcase, editors have complete control over the selection of news. They can process their articles into various news formats and further redirect readers to the full text of these articles on their websites, which is expected to allow them to expand their audience.
The licensing program is the result of pressure from the EU and other countries for technology companies to pay for the copyrighted content they use in their services. The EU changed its copyright rules last year. These changes allow news publishers to claim compensation for portions of content that appear on online platforms.
Currently, Google News Showcase has partnered with more than 600 news outlets in about a dozen countries around the world, including Germany, the United Kingdom, Australia, and Argentina.
Under the licensing agreements, Google also pays publishers to allow users to read a limited number of articles, which are otherwise only available to subscribers, free of charge.
Since 2015, Google has invested 39 million korunas (€1.5 million) in innovations in Czech news projects. During the coronavirus pandemic, the company financially supported 11 Czech newsrooms focusing mainly on regional and community news.
Title image: In this Oct. 20, 2015 file photo is signage outside Google headquarters in Mountain View, Calif. The owner of the Daily Mail website is suing Google, saying the tech company’s dominance in online advertising has harmed its business. The suit, filed Monday, April 19, 2021, in federal court in New York, says Google publishes publishers’ search results if they don’t sell enough ad space through Google. (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez, File)