Google removes links to California news sites for some users


Google is testing a new move in California that could impact how people find news online. The test involves removing some California news websites from search results. This test is seen as a response to a potential law that would require Google to pay news companies for linking to their content.

The decision was announced in a blog post by Google on Friday. They mentioned that it’s a short-term test for a small group of users to see how the proposed law would affect their search engine.

Travis Scott, a popular rapper, is also involved in this situation. He performed at the Astroworld festival in 2021, where 10 people died due to a crowd surge. Scott’s lawyers argue that he shouldn’t be held responsible for the tragedy since he was just a performer and not in charge of security.

The proposed law in California would require big tech companies like Google to pay a percentage of their advertising revenue to news companies for linking to their content. This is meant to support journalism jobs, which have been declining as traditional media companies struggle to make money online.

While some support the law, others, including Google, oppose it. They argue that it could hurt local news organizations and benefit big out-of-state companies instead.

This situation is part of a larger debate about the power of tech companies like Google and how they affect access to news online. It also comes at a time when Google is facing legal challenges related to antitrust issues.

Google’s decision to test removing news websites from search results is not new. Similar tactics have been used in other countries when faced with similar laws. For example, Meta, the company behind Facebook and Instagram, blocked content from Canadian publishers on its platforms when faced with similar legislation in Canada.

However, completely blocking news content could also harm Google. News websites contribute to Google’s traffic and help them make money through advertising. Without news content, Google could lose valuable traffic and revenue.

The debate over Google’s role in the news industry comes at a time when the company is facing legal challenges related to antitrust issues. The U.S. Justice Department has accused Google of abusing its power to stifle competition and innovation. A federal judge is expected to issue a decision in this case later this year.

In another case, a federal jury found Google guilty of creating an illegal monopoly through its app store for Android smartphones. This verdict could lead to changes in how Google operates its app store.

California has taken steps to support local journalism, including funding programs to place journalists in local newsrooms and considering tax credits for local news organizations.

Overall, the situation highlights the complex relationship between tech giants like Google and the news industry, as well as the challenges of regulating these powerful companies.


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