Country Press Australia pens agreement with Google on Showcase program

Country Press Australia (CPA) has become the latest to sign an agreement with Google, that will see over 70 regional titles join the Google News Showcase. The value of the agreement was not disclosed.

Google News Showcase was launched earlier this year, as a program paying publishers to curate content, in order to “build deeper relationships with readers”.

Country Press Australia represents almost 180 independent regional and local mastheads and online platforms nationally.

Andrew Manuel, resident of Country Press Australia commented that the deal highlights the ongoing importance of local news across Australia. 

“Country Press Australia member newspapers provide an essential service to local communities and are vital to the local democracies being able to assist in holding those responsible to account.” 

Earlier this year, Country Press Australia signed Letters of Intent with both Facebook and Google, following authorisation from the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) for its members to collectively negotiate with the tech giants over payments for news content appearing on the respective platforms.

Director of news partnerships APAC at Google, Kate Beddoe, said that this agreement will help to support local titles which have operated as sole news sources in many local and regional areas for decades.

We are very pleased to reach this agreement and welcome Country Press Australia outlets to Google News Showcase. We are also working with Country Press Australia to support the ongoing digital transformation of its members, helping with the sustainability of these news businesses,” said Beddoe. 

“We’ve helped support the news industry for two decades and Showcase is our biggest investment yet. We look forward to continuing to build on this important work in partnership with the Australian news industry.” 

Google News Showcase

Manuel continued: “Local newspapers are often the only source of local news and provide a platform for informed public debate. This agreement will help sustain public interest journalism across regional Australia well into the future with a monetary exchange, innovation changes as well as enabling a sustainable online model for traditional newspaper publishers.”

Last month, Google and News Corp launched the Digital News Academy, an initiative to provide digital skills training and new opportunities for young journalists across Australia.

Since the launch other titles to have inked deals with the Google News Showcase include The Guardian, News Corp, Junkee, and Seven. The program was originally launched with deals with Australian Community Media (ACM), Private Media, Schwartz Media, Solstice Media and The Conversation.

When it was launched in February, Nine refused to participate in the program, denouncing its launch as another sign the tech giant will not negotiate reasonably with media companies.


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