NEW DELHI: Google announced Wednesday a new Journalism Emergency Aid Fund, which will be used to provide assistance to small and medium news publishers around the world, including India. The company, however, did not say how much money would be offered through these funds.
“This funding is open to news organizations that produce original news for the local community during this crisis period, and will range from low dollars for small hyper-local news rooms to low tens of thousands for larger news rooms, with variations per region,” Richard Gringas writes, vice president, News, on Google, in a blog post.
Applications for funds will be closed on April 29 and the company will announce the issuer that will receive funds after that. The company also donated $ 1 million to the International Center for Journalists (ICFJ) through its charity, Google.org.
Only editorial rooms that have been operating for at least 12 months are eligible for the fund. The fund is “targeted at” the newsroom which employs between two and 100 permanent employee journalists (FTE). “Local publishers who employ more than 100 FTE journalists can still apply and will be considered subject to Google’s discretion, especially based on differences in needs in different countries / regions,” the company said in its eligibility criteria. Lifestyle, sports and B2B publications will not be considered, and Google only wants publications with “core news provision”.
Covid-19 locking has encouraged news consumption, but also slowed revenue for publishers. As a result, many news agencies have to downsize with their staff. According to reports, more than a thousand journalists from print, television and digital media, even in India, have been given pink slips due to the slowdown. In the past week, many small media organizations in India have stopped publishing or broadcasting broadcasts because income has dried up.