Google News Seals Deals With Major Agencies

    August 31, 2007

The Associated Press, Agence France-Presse, the Press Association, and the Canadian Press are expanding upon earlier deals with Google News, and as part of the latest arrangement, Google News will now host some of their stories on its own site.

Building up to that development, the corporation will cut down on some repetition – the Guardian Unlimited’s Jemima Kiss reports, “Google News will scan the news stories . . . and omit from its search results any duplicated versions of stories from these agencies that other news sites host.”  I’m personally rather grateful for this – it’s disappointing to see your list of potential sources dwindle from 12 to two following a click of the mouse.

Kiss then continues, “Instead, the site will show the original agency stories.  But if the agencies do not have their own news site, Google will host the copy itself.”  And that’s a pretty key point of interest here.

There are several benefits and drawbacks to this aspect of the deal, and, for that matter, to the deal as a whole; one thing that’s sure to be revived is the “stealing content” vs. “giving publicity” debate.  The four agencies listed earlier (whose names are too long to mention again) are giants within their field, however, so it’s not like the arrangement is some odd and quirky phenomenon.  And it seems likely that other news agencies may clamor for the same treatment.

Hat tip to Search Engine Land’s Danny Sullivan, who spends an informative 1,000 words further weighing these issues.