Google has launched on Monday a new platform named News Labs, which aims to be one of the most extensive tools for media outlets, newsrooms and freelance journalists throughout the world. The site offers a vast array of Google resources and tutorials on how to use and integrate them into news reports, while also granting access to the most recent version of Google Trends.
Google News Labs is part of an ongoing effort by the company to get more involved in the journalistic world, with the Silicon Valley giant previously launching YouTube Newswire last week. Designed in combination with news agency Storyful this adds a curated feed on the video site filled only with newsworthy events. Other initiatives aimed at journalist include The First Draft Collection, in which expert journalists will offer training on the topic video verification and research, and WITNESS Media Lab, a media project which will do some in-depth investigations into human rights issues.
These projects will be part of News Lab sites, with useful links and resources being made available for other journalists. The site will also be a hub for Google’s partnerships and projects with media outlets and other similar organizations. Some of the partnerships currently shown on the site include a grassroots journalism project, investigative reporting summits hosted by Google and conferences on using new technology as investigative tools.
The site currently has a Data section which forwards towards the most updated version of Google Trends, whose redesign was launched last week for a starting base of 28 countries.
Google’s initiative might come as a response to Facebook’s stated intentions of becoming more involved with news distribution, with a planned feature letting media outlets post articles directly on the site. As the popularity of Facebook greatly outranks that of Google +, it is also the primary hub of citizen journalism.
And as social media is becoming with each passing a year a more present source in journalistic reports, it’s no wonder that Google is looking at alternative ways of staying relevant to the journalistic world. In this regard, the amounts of data Google can offer journalists is an inestimable asset – if only for the fact that two thirds of the world’s internet go through its search engine.
Image Source: NDTV