Money & Business

How Google’s Big Journalism Gesture Helps Nonprofits

By / Mar 21, 2018 (georgeclerk/iStock Unreleased/Getty Images Plus)

A decent chunk of the roughly $300 million Google is investing in journalism endeavors will head to nonprofit organizations, which will help fund programs designed to improve news literacy and fight misinformation.

Google made an audacious financial pledge to help journalism in a big way this week. And at least some of the funds will go to support the work of nonprofit organizations.

On Tuesday, the company announced the Google News Initiative, in which it will spend $300 million to support journalism over the next three years in a variety of ways, including through its existing AMP platform and  via a new subscription platform.

Coupled with the initiative were grants to organizations such as the Poynter Institute, a long-running journalism education nonprofit, and First Draft, an anti-misinformation group formally affiliated with the Harvard Kennedy School’s Shorenstein Center on Media, Politics, and Public Policy.

The $3 million investment in Poynter will help fund MediaWise, a campaign to improve media literacy among middle and high school students. Poynter will team with the Local Media Association and the Stanford Graduate School of Education. The goal is to reach at least a million students.

“Democracy works best when citizens can make decisions for themselves based on accurate, independent, and honest information,” Poynter President Neil Brown said in a news release.

Meanwhile, Google will help First Draft—initially organized as a collaboration among several news organizations—to launch a set of tools that mix journalism and computing to better track misinformation throughout elections, according to TechCrunch. It’s an extension of Google’s prior support of First Draft.

“The commitments we’re making through the Google News Initiative demonstrate that news and quality journalism is a top priority for Google,” Google Chief Business Officer Philipp Schindler wrote in a blog post. “We know that success can only be achieved by working together, and we look forward to collaborating with the news industry to build a stronger future for journalism.”

Ernie Smith

Ernie Smith is the social media journalist for Associations Now, a former newspaper guy, and a man who is dangerous when armed with a good pun. More »

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