Associated Press spokesman Paul Colford emailed me about this post, and said that “only a tiny fraction” of the content that the newswire shares with aggregators such as Google and Yahoo comes from its member papers. Here is his comment in full:
“APâ€™s state wires, which include member content, are not licensed to Google and other online aggregators.
As a result, only a tiny fraction of the national and international stories sold by AP to aggregators originated with members of the cooperative â€“ typically scoops credited to the members.
Except for this tiny fraction, the stories sold to Google and others are original AP reports by agency staffers.”
Colford also said that the Nashua Telegraph yearbook story described in the post below moved on the AP wire with a tagline that gave credit to the newspaper (although I didn’t see any such credit on the Google News version).
I got a comment on one of my posts today from Damon Kiesow, the managing editor of the Nashua Telegraph, and I thought it was worth highlighting here because he talks about a real-world example of what the new Google “hosted news” deal with Associated Press is like for newspapers such as his.
According to Damon, his paper wrote an offbeat story about a girl and her problems getting a picture into her high-school yearbook, and Associated Press picked it up — and now is ranked as the top source. Here’s his comment:
Our first experience with the new AP/Google partnership:
The yearbook story was an offbeat piece that was picked up by the national wire. So, instead of Google giving our version (NashuaTelegraph.com) top prominence – the AP/Google page gets the traffic.
As Damon points out, even the other newspapers that picked up the wire story — such as Boston.com — are given preferential treatment in Google News, and the original Nashua Telegraph story comes up at the bottom of the search results. But there’s a silver lining, says Damon:
“Despite our angst at this, we have the last laugh as Fark.com ended up pointing at our version, driving 40 – 50k pageviews to that one story this morning.”
Welcome to the ever-changing world of Google-driven news. Steve Yelvington has some worthwhile perspective on the Google AP deal here.