Google unveils new features and tools to support local news

Google has launched new tools and features for readers and journalists designed to help local news outlets, he announced today. The headline feature is a carousel that displays local news in response to search queries, launched worldwide in all languages ​​starting today. Google initially spear the functionality to provide local information for COVID searches, but it has now been extended to other topics such as sports, local government and more.

Google said it has tweaked its systems so that relevant and authoritative local news sources appear alongside national posts more often in Top Stories and other general news articles. “This improvement ensures that people will see authoritative local stories when they search for news, helping both brand and news publisher content reach more people,” Google said.

He is also able to explore narrow sub-themes related to local news, such as high school football. Combined with its location services (provided these are turned on), you should get more relevant results. “For example, if you’re in Detroit and researching football, now we’re going to show you the results of the local high school and college teams, rather than just showing you the results of, say, the pro team,” he said. Google said. It will also show tweets from news agencies as well as “authoritative sources and authors”.

Google launches new features to support local news outlets

Along with new consumer features, Google announced new data tools for journalists. The first is the Census Mapper project, a map that can be embedded into stories to display census data at the national, state, and county level. It was produced as part of the Census Co-op 2020, supported by the Google News Initiative. It can show census data at the local level, showing how populations have changed over time. Google is also improving its Common knowledge project, a visual journalism project that allows journalists to explore local data.

The new features could be cold comfort to the many local newspapers and websites that have been went bankrupt in part because of the flow of ad dollars to companies like Facebook and Google. These two tech giants have put funds to support local journalism, but it hasn’t done much to stop the decline newspapers that provide a valuable service to their community.