The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation and Civil Media collectively contributing another $1 million for the initiative.
Google is all set to venture into journalism. Newspack, the latest initiative of Google News, is aimed at helping small newsrooms overcome the challenges of going digital. A publishing platform for local news publishers, Newspack is a fast, secure, low-cost publishing system tailor-made to the needs of small newsrooms, according to Jim Albrecht, product management director of Google Search.
Google has partnered with Automattic and WordPress.com and has invested $1.2 million with the Lenfest Institute for Journalism, The John S. and James L. Knight Foundation and Civil Media collectively contributing another $1 million for the initiative.
In a blog post, Albrecht details the plans. “While Newspack publishers will have access to all the plug-ins created by the WordPress developer community, the core product is not trying to be all things to all publishers. It is trying to help small publishers succeed by building best practices into the product while removing distractions that may divert scarce resources,” he says.
“We'll also be advising on the Newspack feature set, based on feedback from our extensive contact with local publishers, and providing technical support on the integration of Google products,” he adds.
With Newspack, Google is taking another step towards their goal of local news sustainability by providing critical pieces of technology at high quality and low cost. As Albrecht puts it, “We like to call it ‘an opinionated CMS’: it knows the right thing to do, even when you don’t.”