Brazil to Google News: Leave our newspapers alone

Brazil to Google News: Leave our newspapers alone

Summary: Is Google News a freeloader? The Brazilian press believe so.

TOPICS: Tech Industry

Brazil's National Association of Newspapers (ANJ) has denied Google News the ability to re-post headlines and newspaper article excerpts.


The BBC reports that all 154 members have followed the association's recommendation to opt-out of the service, which compromises of 90 percent of the total country's news circulation.

The ANJ claims that the Google News aggregation service has resulted in a drop of traffic -- and therefore advertising revenue -- something which is contrary to the technology giant's claims that the feature boosts reader rates.

Carlos Fernando Lindenberg Neto, the association's president, in an interview with the Knight Center for Journalism said:

"Google News is benefiting commercially from the content it uses and is not prepared to discuss a model of remuneration for this material. Staying with Google News was not helping us grow our digital audiences, on the contrary. By providing the first few lines of our stories to Internet users, the service reduces the chances that they will look at the entire story in our websites."

Therefore, if Google wants to feature stories originating from media outlets within the ANJ, it should pay them. The argument is thus: by including several lines of a newspaper article, the reader is less inclined to go to the source. With this in mind, the ANJ conducted an experiment with Google in 2010, which involved only publishing the headline to boost readership. The experiment failed.

The BBC writes that Google's Public Policy Director, Marcel Leonardi, defended the decision not to pay for headlines at a meeting with the American Press Association -- saying that it channels a billion clicks to news sites globally. In addition, he compared the ANJ's demand to taxing a taxi driver for taking tourists to eat at a particular restaurant.

The newspaper sites will still be indexed by Google, but to access articles, you will have to go directly to an individual website.

Topic: Tech Industry

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  • Cut Off Their Own Nose To Spite Their Face

    What these newspapers are forgetting is that a search engine is a traffic-generating machine--a great way to send viewers to your site. If they opt out of Google, then that's almost like opting out of the web altogether--how are people going to find their sites?

    If they're smart, they won't look a gift horse in the mouth: let Google go on doing what it does best, and spend their time more fruitfully, thinking up ways to monetize all those views the search engine is sending their way for free, instead of moaning about how their business is dying, conveniently ignoring the fact that it's their own fault.
    • Not exactly

      If you look at google news, most of people just read headlines and do not bother about content. That is true for 90% of any news for a particular person.

      But lets' assume that I do not have access to google news, what do I do? I just open a few news websites and look at their headlines. Even though I only look at less than half of the news articles, this results in more people going to their website. Yes, people do not go to9 all the news sites, but that's just competition.

      With Google news, you will filter the news that you are not interested and therefore you never go to their site. That is good for customer, but not for the newspapers so much.
      Sai Krishna Vajjala
      • Exactly

        If I want to read online an article from my local newspaper -- or from a nationally-read newspaper like WSJ, USA Today or The Washington Post -- I would [b]at most[/b] do a one-time search for the newspaper's website, then [b]add the website as a bookmark or in my Favorites list[/b]. Presto, I no longer have to depend on Google every single time I want to read a story from the newspaper online, I just go straight to the source.

        Same thing can be done with just about any other news provider. Want CNN's take on a story? Go to your bookmark. Wondering what Reuters or the Associated Press has on a topic? Go straight to their website bookmarks. It takes a lot less time than trying to wade through Google search results, & you can search directly for the news story on the newspaper's website.
      • Re: at google news, most of people just read headlines and do not bother ab

        The question is, are the news sites getting more traffic by being indexed in the search engines, or not? And the figures show, they benefit from being indexed.

        Besides, if they don't want to be indexed, all they have to do is say so in their robots.txt, no need to make a public song and dance about it.

        So really, this was never about Google "stealing" their news stories, it's really about their inability to monetize their own web traffic.