Media Insider: Google to Pay Publishers, CBSN Expands Globally, Knight Foundation Awards Newsroom Grants

Welcome to Media Insider, PR Newswire’s round-up of media stories from the week.

A laptop on top of a bench; the laptop has the Google search page on the screen

AXIOS | SARA FISCHER
Google Will Start Paying Publishers to License Content

In a major departure from its long-standing practice of not paying publishers directly to distribute their work, Google is creating a licensing program to pay publishers for “high-quality content” as part of a new news product launching later this year. Regulators around the world have been threatening Google with broad-based policies that would force it to pay publishers on policymakers’ terms. Google aims to get ahead of that threat by introducing its own payout terms, while also strengthening its relationship with the embattled publishing community. The new program consists of two aspects: Google will pay select publishers to distribute their work – whether it be video, audio, images, or text — and Google also will offer to pay for free access for users to read paywalled articles on a publisher’s site. Google has already signed partnership agreements with local and national publications in Germany, Australia, and Brazil, and plans to expand to other countries in the next few months.

In more Google news, the tech giant also updated its analytics tools for newsrooms.

AXIOS | SARA FISCHER
CBSN Launches Global Expansion

CBSN, the 24/7 digital streaming news service for CBS News, is expanding internationally to pull in more digital TV ad dollars, while also expanding its audience. The company has brokered over-the-top (OTT) TV carriage partnerships with connected TV providers in over 89 countries outside of the U.S. “It’s always chicken and the egg with international,” said Christy Tanner, executive vice president and general manager of CBS News Digital. “We need to build the audience first in order to have the volume to turn it into a robust AVOD (advertising video on-demand) advertising businesses.” The international expansion comes on the heels of the CBS merger with Viacom, which closed late last year. Tanner says that the international sales forces at both companies can combine their efforts to sell more ads for CBSN.

ICYMI: Hearst Magazines employees vote to decide union fate.

EDITOR & PUBLISHER
Knight Foundation Awards 24 Newsrooms $20,000 Grants to Adopt or Manage Publishing Platforms

To help news organizations better serve their communities with quality news and information, the Knight Foundation announced the first 24 recipients of support from its $2 million, three-year technology initiative to strengthen digital publishing solutions in newsrooms. After a competitive application process, the first 24 newsrooms have been selected to receive $20,000 in grants for publishing tools that will improve distribution, community engagement, and revenue opportunities such as digital subscriptions and membership. The first group includes a mix of nonprofit news organizations, small commercial community newspapers, and new digital upstarts. Of the selected newsrooms, 58% are nonprofit organizations, 58% are led by or serve communities of color, and 42% are committed to delivering local journalism.

You can read the full list of newsrooms in Knight Foundation’s press release.

THE WASHINGTON POST | ELAHE IZADI
Why Hundreds of American Newsrooms Have Started Capitalizing the ‘B’ in ‘Black’

In the span of barely more than week, as news organizations have wrestled with how they have historically covered race, hundreds have made one small but potent change: They have started capitalizing the ‘B’ in “Black.” Publishers say they were inspired to make the change after hearing from readers, employees, and community leaders, and that it is intended to better reflect the large swath of the population descended from the African diaspora, as well as grant the word the same emphasis as other ethnic and racial descriptors. USA Today and its affiliated network of more than 260 local papers adopted the change late last week. The Los Angeles Times, NBC News, MSNBC, BuzzFeed, and the McClatchy newspaper chain also have moved to capitalize the word. Sarah Glover, an NBC executive and former president of the National Association of Black Journalists who has championed the move, described it as “affirming the experience and existence of an entire group of people who built this country and have contributed to every sector.” It is the latest iteration in a long history of American institutions grappling with what words to use when discussing race.

The Associated Press also changed its writing style guide last week.

CNN BUSINESS | KERRY FLYNN
Bon Appétit Vows to Resolve Pay Inequities and Prioritize People of Color for Editor-in-Chief Search

Bon Appétit and Epicurious, both owned by Condé Nast, committed to creating change following the resignation of Editor-in-Chief Adam Rapoport over racism allegations. Titled “A Long-Overdue Apology, and Where We Go From Here,” the statement was posted to Bon Appétit’s site on Wednesday. The statement referred to a 2013 Instagram photo of Rapoport in brown face as “horrific on its own, but also speaks to the much broader and longstanding impact of racism at these brands.” That image of Rapoport shared on Twitter inspired a flood of other allegations of racism and pay disparity at Bon Appétit. “Many new BIPOC hires have been in entry-level positions with little power, and we will be looking to accelerate their career advancement and pay,” read the statement. Bon Appétit said it will prioritize people of color for consideration for the editor-in-chief position left open by Rapoport’s departure. The company also committed to anti-racism training for the staff, to resolve pay inequities, and to hire more freelancers of color.

Read next: Colin Kaepernick is joining Medium’s board to write about racism.

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Maria Perez is Director, Web Experience & Operations at Cision. In her spare time, she runs Bags of Love Foundation, a local nonprofit that provides cancer patients with care packages aimed at making their treatment more comfortable. She also enjoys kickboxing, baking, and cuddling with her dog Toody, who thinks he rules the world.

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