A former Google employee says he’s leaving Google for an alternative, but not for good.
He told The Jerusalem News that he’s “determined” to keep using Google’s news aggregation platform and to find a way to make money from the data he collects from its users.
The news comes as a new Pew Research Center report suggests that Google News has lost the ability to compete with traditional news sources.
Google News is a “highly visible” product that has been used by more than 90 percent of the people who visit Google News and the data collected by Google News is widely used by publishers, according to the report, “Pew Internet and American Life: News, Politics and Technology,” by Michael McDonald and Benjamin M. Anderson.
Pew’s findings underscore the importance of keeping the news aggregation service as a service, not a paid advertisement, said Michael Weber, the Pew director of online communities.
“Google is still in the business of serving people, but the data collection that goes with it is very, very different,” Weber said.
“People are using Google to find the most interesting news, and they’re using Google as an advertising service.
That’s a very different way of doing business.”
The report also notes that the number of Google users who report being interested in news in general fell to 3 percent in the second quarter of 2018 from 4.3 percent in 2017.
“The rise of personalized content is likely a big driver of the decline,” Weber wrote.
In a statement, Google News chief product officer Andrew Pincus said the company is committed to keeping users informed about news and social commentary and that the company’s efforts are focused on building a community around news.
Google has long offered a news aggregator for its search engine, but that platform has since moved to a “content-first” approach to providing news.
Pincus noted that Google’s platform has not been the only way that Google has delivered news to users, including through apps like Google Reader.
“This data will continue to be valuable to us as we work on delivering more news to our users and our audiences,” Pincs said.
In addition to the new report, the Jerusalem Post has reported on Google News’ growing popularity and recent moves to improve the product, including an initiative to integrate search and the social network with news aggregation.