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News, Google, and Custom News

May 9, 2009

Juxtaposed with the interesting press about the newspaper industry, Google has recently stated that:

    In about six months, the company will roll out a system that will bring high-quality news content to users without them actively looking for it.

     Under this latest iteration of advanced search, users will be automatically served the kind of news that interests them just by calling up Google’s page. The latest algorithms apply ever more sophisticated filtering – based on search words, user choices, purchases, a whole host of cues – to determine what the reader is looking for without knowing they’re looking for it.

     And on this basis, Google believes it will be able to sell premium ads against premium content.

     The first two news organizations to get this treatment, Schmidt said, will be the New York Times and the Washington Post.

Short-term, the impact is certainly more for our information vendors:  Lexis-Nexis, InfoDesk, Factiva and the like.  Yet if we think about it – a lot of us spend time/money/resources on ‘alerts’ for our users.  How this potentially alters that is worth thinking about (cost savings, demonstrating value, roles, etc.).

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