Analysis says Google made $4.7B from news sites last year

Analysis says Google made $4.7B from news sites last year
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Google made $4.7 billion from news sites in 2018, according to new research from the News Media Alliance, a trade association representing newspapers in the U.S. and Canada.

News content makes up between 16 percent and 40 percent of Google results, according to the study, and the company’s revenue from distributing news content is only $400 million less than the $5.1 billion the entire U.S. news industry brought in from digital advertising in 2018.

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Google News grew dramatically over the last decade. In 2009, it saw 24 million monthly unique visitors in the U.S., less than half the number visiting CNN and The New York Times. By May 2018, that number had reached 150 million, nearly double that of CNN and the Times.

Between January 2017 and January 2018, traffic from Google to news publisher sites increased more than 25 percent to about 1.6 billion visits per week.

While platforms such as Facebook and Google are “wonderful distribution systems,” the revenue they generate has not trickled down to publishers, according to David Chavern, the alliance’s president.

“They just need to work with us to build a sustainable digital future for news and they haven’t been willing to do that yet,” he said, according to The Guardian. “They say a lot of nice things but steadfastly refuse to pay for or improve the economic deal for news.”

Google criticized the study as “inaccurate,” according to The Guardian.

“Every month Google News and Google Search drive over 10 billion clicks to publishers’ websites, which drive subscriptions and significant ad revenue. We’ve worked very hard to be a collaborative and supportive technology and advertising partner to news publishers worldwide,” a Google spokesperson told the newspaper.