Google Invest $30 Million for Digital News Initiative in Europe

By Staff Writer

Mar 02, 2016 05:38 AM EST

Last week, Google announced to invest $30 million to 128 news organizations in Europe. This investment is a part of the Google's Digital News Initiative (DNI) plan.

Speaking in Paris Institute of Political Studies on February 24, Google CEO Sundhar Pichai remarked, "We are committed to ongoing discussion between the tech and news sectors," as quoted by Phys.Org. "To promote innovation in digital journalism. And play our part in building a more sustainable news ecosystem."

Google aimed to stimulate digital journalism with the investment through its Digital News Initiative. The initiative is a partnership between Google and news publishers in Europe to support high quality journalism through technology and innovation. The Mountain View, California-based company set a specific goal of DNI to encourage a more sustainable news ecosystem, promote innovation in digital journalism through ongoing collaboration and dialogue between the tech and news sectors.

For the initiative itself, Google has prepared $163 million fund and cooperate with 160 news publishers across Europe. Head of Google's DNI Innovation Fund for News & Publishers Ludovic Blecher told The Daily Telegraph regarding stimulating digital journalism in Europe, "This includes disruptive products for new ways to tell stories, or new ways to consume news."

The awarded projects were selected from a pool of 1200 applications from 30 countries. Other media companies which also won the are Telegraph and Le Monde, among with other individual or small news startups. As Blecher said, "It's really about diversity in news, in terms of applicants and type of project and country."

Agence France-Presse (AFP) is among one of the 128 selected news organizations. Google selected AFP because of its platform of interactive graphics. 

One company which become the highlight in the funding is a Spanish news site El Diario. The news site is using a crowdfunding model to create a new journalism funding system. As Tech Crunch reported how it worked which at first, El Diario will identify niche groups of audiences, and invite them to fund a specific story or top up the financial gap in an important coverage.

Another interesting one is a German startup Spectrm. The company build an artificial intelligence engine that help publishers to communicate directly with their readers. Spectrm also provide a push mechanism of news content to individual people using instant messaging apps.

Google and its Digital News Initiative has launched its first step by investing $30 million to news organization all across Europe. The investment were spread to 23 different European countries. With the largest project investments were placed in Germany, United Kingdom, Spain, France and Belgium.

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