Rumor: Google Working On New News Delivery Service

    May 1, 2009
    Chris Crum

Sharon Waxman formerly of the New York Times and the Washington Post, and now writing for the Wrap says that she went to a party at Arianna Huffington’s mansion and spoke with Google CEO Eric Schmidt. Far from the idle chit chat about the weather, she claims that Schmidt told her about Google’s plan to roll out a system in six months that would bring "high-quality news content" to users without them actually looking for it.

"Under this latest iteration of advanced search, users will be automatically served the kind of news that interests them just by calling up Google’s page," explains Waxman. "The latest algorithms apply ever more sophisticated filtering – based on search words, user choices, purchases, a whole host of cues – to determine what the reader is looking for without knowing they’re looking for it."

Eric Schmidt

According to Waxman, Schmidt said the first two news organizations to be featured in this system have been predetermined to be the New York Times and the Washington Post.

Unfortunately, we have to take this whole thing with a grain of salt, and question the legitimacy of the information. VentureBeat says "a source close to Google" is doing so.

"On one hand, we have Waxman, a reputable author and former correspondent for both the Washington Post and the New York Times, saying that Schmidt was concrete in his explanation of the new system, which seems very consistent with expressed goals," says VB’s Camille Ricketts. "…On the other hand, we have Google, a company that is usually tight as a drum when it comes to pre-announcements about products."

Ricketts also points out that Schmidt himself has historically been tight-lipped about forthcoming Google features. Waxman does get pretty specific though, and she has a reputation of credibility, so we certainly don’t want to dismiss her article as false just yet. We’re just going to have to take a wait and see approach.