Krishna Bharat, founder of Google News, told an industry conference last week that it was the search giant’s “editorial responsibility” to protect hard news’ place in a more personalised news agenda.
I think people care about what other people are interested in, most importantly in their social circle (…) but beyond that the world at large. I think there is an influential, intellectual component to our audience that cares very much about getting the hard news of the day. I don’t think there is a risk of us personalising so much that we keep the hard news out the picture. We have an editorial responsibility not to do that.
Chris Horrie from the University of Winchester’s journalism school was at the the IJ-7 ‘Innovation Journalism’ conference at Stanford University last week and grabbed Bharat for a quick interview afterwards, in which the head of Google News gave his advice to journalists on writing for the web and search engines: