Google granted $5 million for grassroots journalism efforts. The Knight Foundation will get $2 million, while the remaining $3 million will go to international media efforts.
Google on Oct. 26 said it is investing $5 million to prop up grassroots
journalism efforts, starting with $2 million to support the John S. and James
L. Knight Foundation.
The Knight Foundation, which pumped more than $100 million into media innovation,
will use $1 million to support U.S.
grant-making for media experimentation.
The other $1 million will be allocated for the Knight News Challenge. The
News Challenge supported DocumentCloud, which brings source material from
investigative reporting online for anyone to read.
"This is an enormously important vote of confidence by the industry
leader. We welcome Google's support," said Knight Foundation President
"The free flow of information is essential to a democratic society. Already,
more Americans get their information from the Internet than from newspapers.
That trend will only intensify, making it imperative for our democracy that we
find ways to effectively deliver the news and information people require on the
new digital platforms."
Google said it will invest the remaining $3 million in grassroots journalism
projects in other countries through a similar partnership to be revealed later.
"Journalism is fundamental to a functioning democracy," said
Nikesh Arora, president of global sales operations and
business development. "So as media organizations globally continue to
broaden their presence online, we're eager to play our part on the technology
Google has done a fair amount of other media experimentation. The company
made several changes to Google News
this year that drew the ire of loyal users.
Google last year launched Fast Flip
and Living Stories
to test new visualization formats.
Fast Flip was actually appropriated in Google News.
The $5 million investment in nonprofit organizations for grassroots media
ventures might be the only media-oriented venture that won't be viewed with a
gimlet eye by media publications.
, his News Corp. and several other publications
have been at odds with Google for years, claiming that Google takes their
content and piggybacks onto it to pad its online ad coffers.
Google argues that indexing media content helps publishers get more exposure
for their work.
Occasionally, the search engine and media players hash out their grievances.
Google in August inked
a deal with the Associated Press to index fresh content in