Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Google CEO demands that newspapers change model

Google's CEO, Eric Schmidt, spoke at the Newspaper Association of America's convention in San Diego about the need for newspapers to work with Google.

Schmidt believes that the future of newspapers is for the newspapers to accept aggregators, like Google News.  He believes that the only way for newspapers to survive is for them to become more like Wikipedia and blogs.  This all came partially as a response to the Associated Press making statements about protecting "news content from misappropriation" by aggregators like Google News.

"In that model, newspapers become platforms for the technology to use their services," Schmidt said, "to build businesses on top of them, and also to interlink -- hyperlink -- all of the different information sources that end-users will take."

He also feels one of the keys to saving newspapers is breaking into the internet phone. Schmidt said that newspapers should be taking advantage of mobile technology as a distribution mechanism, beginning to think of stories not as happening on a given day, but as continuous and "living," and, of course, improving the experience of reading online.

"We need to reinvent the way the Web delivers this content," he said, "so that you can have the kind of experience, when people are wandering around with their phone and so forth, that you can have with a printed magazine.

Schmidt also indicated that it is more important for newspapers to make money from advertisers than consumers because newspapers are a "consumer business."

Meanwhile, AP is not the only newspaper-related business upset with Google.  Guardian Media Group, which publishes The Guardian in the UK, is asking the British government to investigate Google News and other news aggregators. In its written response to the preliminary Digital Britain report, The Guardian argues Google reaps the benefit of content from news sites without contributing anything towards their costs.

The AP is also preparing a lawsuit against Google News.

I think this is a bad business model for the AP and for The Guardian.  They need the advertising money that comes from Google News linking to their websites.  I disagree with Google News that newspapers should depend on advertisements for their primary source of income.  Advertising is to subjective to the economy, and the best newspapers (like The Wall Street Journal and the New York Times) depend on subscriptions not advertisements.  However, news aggregators is a big help to giving more advertising money to newspapers.


  1. I agree that newspapaers should seriously consider merging with other internet news related sources and blog sites, but google?
    Come on Schmidt, now you're just being greedy.

    As time moves foward, people have less time to waste, and unfortunatley reading a newspaper is no longer a daily ritual among most Americans. However, I don't believe Google is the right tool to give readers the straight foward and acurate news they are looking for.

    This search engine is great if your looking for instructions on "how to," or information on someone or something, but not for our daily news. Advertising is also dramatically dropping, and attemping to use it as a major source of income is rediculous.

    More and more newspapers and internet news sites are cutting out unnecessary "jargon". Media companies are realizing that people just want straight foward news as fast as possible, and then get on with their day.

    Google is the most powerful search engine in the world, why would they demand to take on a task they are not made for? I believe if google moves forward with this concept they will just confuse their search engine users, and possibly compromise their now Monopoly-like business.

    Like the old saying goes,"If if it's not broken, don't fix it!".

  2. I enjoy picking up a newspaper, and scanning the articles instead of looking for specifics online. It seems harder to search for something than to look at something already provided. Not to mention the workers and foundation of a newspaper company. I really hope the idea of newspapers in today's society has not been forgotten.

  3. I'm with you Stephenie, i enjoyed picking up the newspaper and reading the different articles and cartoons. That's the joy of it all. And a lot of people don't have computer's to go on the internet, so they should think about them. I hope we don't loose the newpaper entirely to the internet.

  4. I'm with both Diane and Stphenie on this one. I enjoy picking up a newspaper and reading the interesting articles. And if I want to read another newspaper such as the Wichita Eagle or Kansas City Star, I have that option. But the joy of it all is being able to read the funnies every now and then and doing the daily crossword or jumble puzzles. If papers go to the internet, we will lose all of those features. One other thing we will be missing is the Sunday ads and coupons. I hope we don't lose these papers to the internet, but I am afraid that this is what is happening.