Google limits news links in California over proposed ‘Link Tax’ bill.

A brown cardboard price tag with a twine string and a black dollar sign symbol, influenced by the Link Tax Law, set against a dark gray background.

Google announced which plans to reduce access to California news websites for a portion of the state’s users.

The decision comes as Google prepares for the potential passage of the California Journalism Preservation Act (CJPA), a invoice require online platforms like Google to pay news publishers to link to their content.

What is the California Journalism Preservation Act?

The CJPA, introduced in the California state legislature, aims to support local journalism by creating what Google calls a “link tax.”

If passed, the law would require companies like Google to pay media outlets when they send readers to news articles.

However, Google believes that this approach needs to be reviewed and could hurt rather than help the news industry.

Jaffer Zaidi, vice president of Global News Partnerships at Google, stated in a blog post:

“It would favor the media conglomerates and hedge funds (who have been lobbying for this bill) and could use the CJPA funds to continue to buy up local California newspapers, strip them of reporters, and create more ghost newspapers that operate with a skeleton crew. to produce only low-cost and often low-quality content.”

Answer from Google

To assess the potential impact of the CJPA on its services, Google is conducting a test with a percentage of users in California.

During this test, Google will remove links to California news websites that may cover the proposed legislation.

Zaidi states:

“To prepare for potential CJPA implications, we are beginning a short-term test for a small percentage of California users. The test process involves removing links to potentially CJPA-covered California news websites for measure the impact of legislation on our product experience.”

Google claims that only 2% of search queries are related to news

Zaidi highlighted changes in people’s news consumption habits and their effect on Google search queries (emphasis mine):

“It’s well known that people get their news from sources like short videos, news bulletins, social media and curated podcasts, and many avoid news altogether. In line with these trends, only 2% of queries on Google Search are related to news.”

Despite the low percentage of news queries, Google wants to continue helping news publishers gain visibility on their platforms.

However, “the CJPA as currently constructed would put an end to these investments,” says Zaidi.

A call for a different approach

In its current form, Google contends that the CJPA undermines news in California and could leave all parties worse off.

The company urges lawmakers to consider alternative approaches that support the news industry without harming smaller local media outlets.

Google argues that, over the past two decades, much has been done to help news publishers innovate:

“We’ve launched Google News Showcase, which operates in 26 countries, including the US, and has more than 2,500 participating publications. Through the Google News Initiative, we’ve partnered with more than 7,000 news publishers around the world, including 200 organizations from news and 6,000 reporters in California alone.”

Zaidi suggested that a healthy news industry in California requires the support of state government i a broad base of private companies.

As the legislative process continues, Google is willing to cooperate with publishers and California lawmakers to explore alternative paths that allow it to continue linking to news.

Featured image: Ismael Juan/Shutterstock

Source link

You May Also Like

About the Author: Ted Simmons

I follow and report the current news trends on Google news.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *