Washington, D.C. – Small online publishers came to the defense of Google and other publishing platforms as Congress considers competition proceedings. Members of the Connected Commerce Council (3C) offered their perspective to the House Judiciary Subcommittee on Antitrust, Commercial and Administrative Law and asked that the subcommittee invite comments and testimony from small online publishers when assessing the value of Google and other platforms to empower small, independent news organizations, find new audiences, and drive revenue in an evolving market.
“The news industry has undergone a rapid transformation over the past ten years. As audiences and advertisers have shifted from print to digital, journalism has had to find ways to be discovered and monetized,” said 3C President Jake Ward. “Google and other platforms that provide small and local news outlets with broader reach are the engine that drives discovery and monetization for journalism throughout the country.”
Over 80,000 publishers around the world show up in Google News, driving vastly greater diversity and reach for small publishers. A 2017 study by Stanford University Economist Susan Athey showed that the availability of Google News increased article page views for small publishers by nearly 45%.
“Google is essential to my business. As a publisher of both a print and digital magazine that tells community stories for a family audience, Google helps me reach new readers and build my revenue base,” said Victoria Wise, Founder & Publisher of Madeworthy Magazine and Tanglewood Moms. “Members of Congress should know the value Google unlocks for publishers like me and the journalism we are able to provide because of it.”
“As a publisher of news & intelligence in the telecom industry, I have seen firsthand the investments Google has made to help me succeed,” said Mike Owings VP of sales and marketing at TeleGeography. “Being able to drive distinct audiences to specialized content would not be possible without a partner like Google in our newsroom.”
“My success as a publisher and media influencer in the hospitality industry has been aided by Google,” said Kimberly Sundt CEO of Pineapple Ponderings. “Congress should know that Google’s amazing stack of tools for publishers enables me to deliver valuable news and insights for hoteliers across the country.”
Through designated programs and grants, Google, Facebook, and other discovery platforms have committed to invest more than $600 million to support the news industry over the next three years beginning in 2018. Google specifically invested in initiatives combating misinformation, increasing media literacy among teens, driving subscription revenue to publishers, and providing tools/analytics to help newsrooms segment and target audiences.
Contact: Matt Ziegman