Late on Friday afternoon is a brilliant time for Google to announce a major change with their news service if they do not want people to talk about much. With their AP, Agence France-Presse, The Press Association in the United Kingdom and The Canadian Press syndication deals, Google claims they are improving duplicate detection, increasing listing variety, and as a net result they are sending MORE traffic to the people they signed syndication deals with.
Google's going beyond just hosted news articles as part of this release. The company also says it will be doing a better job of duplicate detection overall, so that if there's the same article from wire agencies it doesn't have agreements with, such as Reuters, it should be more likely to point to the Reuters site than someone running Reuters material.
Google's market position allows them to address relevancy issues as needed, in order to suit their business agendas. They were lax on duplicate news content for nearly a decade because they wanted to spread their public relations spin through the media and get ad deals with many of the media outlets. After Google secured their CNN partnership, now it is time to solve the news syndication duplicate content problem and send traffic to the international news agencies.
A year or two down the road Google News will likely shift from temporarily archiving news to permanently doing so, and news will be yet another content vertical they own, along with search, ads, analytics, video, and books.
Look mom, newspaper ad revenue shrunk 8.6% year on year and Google is getting those ad dollars. With improved duplicate content filters you can look for those numbers to fall further. I wonder if this is the end of Google's successful public relations campaigns in the mainstream media.
They use coersion to control traffic, and then sell it to you as a feature you wanted. Those guys are soooo good at business!
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