Google struck a content deal with publishers and on Thursday launched a platform in Australia offering paid news content.
The initial publishers featured in the launch were among the first globally to sign up, according to Kate Beddoe, head of news, web and publisher product partnerships at Google.
“We have been continually working with Australian news publishers of all sizes to provide their readers with a different kind of news experience under News Showcase,” Beddoe wrote. “As this early version of News Showcase rolls out, the partnerships will provide financial support for some of the country’s most respected independent, local and regional publications.”
Starting Thursday, several Australian publishers will be paid to provide content for News Showcase. Some of those publications include The Canberra Times, The Illawarra Mercury, The Saturday Paper, Crikey, The New Daily, InDaily and The Conversation.
Financial deals for the content were not disclosed.
Beddoe also explained how Google will make it easier for publishers to learn more about their readers.
In the coming months, publishers will have the ability to learn more with News Showcase metrics in Search Console, giving each more data to better understand the articles and topics interest readers most.
The News Showcase platform, originally rolled out in Brazil and Germany, had been scheduled to launch in June. Plans were delayed when Canberra, the capital city of Australia, moved to make it a legal requirement for Google and Facebook to pay for content from media companies, according to one news source.
Under Australia’s proposed legislation, Google, Facebook and others that curate news from publishers would have to pay for content served up in search results or news feeds Failing to agree to a deal with publishers means an arbitrator would be appointed to determine the price.
In a push to make its own content deals with publishers, Google intended to show that Australian legislation enforcement isn’t necessary.
Reuters last month reported that it had signed a deal with Google to become the first global news provider in the Google News Showcase. The news outlet began offering Google users access to news, topics ranging from sports, politics, general news and more.
The content, selected and curated daily by its editorial team, feeds news updated throughout the day through Reuters-branded News Showcase panels.