Friday, February 8, 2008

Google attempts to enter local news market

Google has added a new thing to its news page: "Local News." Just enter your Zip code or city and you'll get the local news being served up by newspapers that post their copy online. With this addition, Google will be competing against aggregators like EveryStreet, Topix, Yahoo and YourStreet. But, as John Murrell of the Merc's Good Morning Silicon Valley points out, Google's service is, at this point, like having a pile of random clippings thrown at your porch.

He writes:
    I live in a small city near San Jose, but my news neighborhood runs down one side of the bay and up the other. If I plug my home ZIP into Topix or Google’s new feature, I get a mixed bag of high school sports, space heater fires, senior events, police reports and such — all very local, and almost none relevant to my news needs. ...

    If only cities had small dedicated groups of people who worked fulltime to gather local news, organize it, give it some context and present it in a clear and sometimes even entertaining manner. Something like a local newspaper.

1 comment:

Robert B. Livingston said...

No doubt-- In the new age of media, Google's news aggregators are a phenomenal service when it comes to pointing readers to news.

However, I have a bone to pick with Google regarding the way it lumps satires in with news.

I think it is very wrong-- although obviously there are some who would defend it.

Here is my path of discovery-- might there be someone out there studying news aggregators who might use it?