Earlier this year, Google launched a $300 million company-wide effort to support journalism by adding features throughout various products. Today, the Google News Initiative is offering 200,000 free G Suite licenses for local to medium-sized news organizations.
The goal of the wider program is to help news organizations innovate with technology and find new business models. For example, “Subscribe with Google” helps simplify the sign-up process for paywalls by having Google handle the payment backend and account log-ins regardless of the device.
With the latest Google News Initiative Cloud Program, the company is trying to help modernize how newsrooms work. Collaboration, reader engagement, and analytics are cited, with Google positioning G Suite as being able to meet those needs.
Publishers are also managing a similarly dramatic change in the way they build and run their organizations. Every aspect of publishing is being affected as publishers rethink how they collaborate, improve reader engagement and grow their bottom line via data and insights. Google Cloud presents an opportunity to manage this transition in a smart and meaningful way.
Aimed at local, small, and medium-sized news organizations around the world, Google will offer 200,000 free G Suite licenses for up to two years. Publications with fewer than 500 employees can apply for up to 500 accounts.
The G Suite Program is intended for small news organizations with fewer than 500 employees, that are not government-owned or taxpayer-funded (including educational and non profit organizations). G Suite licenses will be available free of charge to the beneficiaries of this program for a duration of up to two years, or December 31, 2021, whichever comes sooner.
Google heavily touts the security angle, while G Suite products like Gmail, Docs collaboration, and Hangouts video conferencing aid in real-time communication.
These products can help keep newsroom data secure and enable editors in the office and reporters in the field to collaborate and edit copy on a story in real time.
In October, Google will open up a second program that grants publications credits for the Google Cloud Platform.
News organizations will be able to use the Cloud credits to modernize their business in a variety of areas, from app development to data analytics and machine learning.
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