"All the News That's Fit to Print" has run at the top of the front page of the New York Times for decades. But, Google (NASDAQ: GOOG) is taking that a step further. It will begin to run a breath-taking amount of news from the Press Association of Britain, Canadian Press, Agence France-Presse and the AP. Google has licensed the feeds and will run the entire stories from the sources. It solves a dispute it has had with some news agencies which claimed that Google was using their headlines to draw users without compensating them as the content holders.
It also changes the Google News model. Google will no longer just run headlines. The stories from these four sources will no longer show up when they run in other media. AP stories are currently picked up by Google, even when they run at AP's newspaper partners. This has sent traffic to a number of newspaper websites, and that will traffic flow is very likely to be undermined.
Google's ability to run entire stories will also allow it to sell advertising on these news pages. Google News is currently "ad free."
News providers to Google now have to worry about whether Google will end up highlighting a small number of news providers who will license to Google all of their content. If so, the traffic to other Google News pages may fall off and the traffic that is sent to the 4,500 other Google News sources could drop sharply.
Google News is a sort of content democracy now, running stories from all over the world based on how the search engine's technology finds and ranks them. Google says that will not change: "Nothing happens algorithmically to these partners that doesn't happen to anybody else," it told Reuters. But, it appears that Google wants to make money on news, so the way that news is picked could eventually change as well
Douglas A. McIntyre is a partner at 24/7 Wall St.