Google’s Digital News Initiative Injects €24 Million Into European Projects


Google’s Digital News Initiative received €24 million in second funding, with a commitment of €150 million to fuel European news organizations. The search giant aims to provide funding to European news organizations to fuel innovation in the market.

The funding will be diversified into 125 projects across 25 European countries.

Digital News Initiative has spoken to thousands of newsrooms and individuals to determine the amount of money going into research and development in the sector. The fund has distributed €51 million so far.

The second round of funding looked at collaborative projects that worked with academics, publics, entrepreneurs and designers. The second round included 850 project submissions, and 124 projects will receive funding through the initiative.

Over one-third, or 43 projects funded, are committed towards collaboration and partnership. Collaboration across newsrooms is expected to excite the European news sector and upcoming companies.

German companies received €5 million in funding followed by Spanish companies, which received €2.1 million. Norway received €1.98 million and the U.K. received €1.76 million.

Individual funding ranges from €50,000 – €300,000, with special cases receiving additional funding. The application and approval process is competitive, with just 124 projects out of 850 receiving funding during the latest round.

Three bigger projects were funded this round, including Spiegel Online – Germany, which received €689,116 from the DNI. Corriere della Sera: The Vocal Bot, an Italian newspaper, received €300,000 in funding to design a digital assistant that can answer news-related questions. Le Temps SA, a Switzerland outlet, received €45,000 to create its “Zombie” tool that will resurface and republish the outlet’s best “evergreen” articles.

The infusion comes following the announcement that Google will work to remove fake news sites from its Google News platform. Hoax stories and fake news plagued the company’s platform during the U.S. presidential elections, which caused backlash amongst readers.

Facebook announced similar plans.

The companies will work to remove fake news from their advertising platforms. Google’s policy update on Monday to reflect the change.