March 3rd, 2008 | Published in Google News
As we're now in early March, it occurs to me that it's still not too late to look back on the past year -- or to look ahead to what's to come in 2008. I look back over last year, and feel happy about what we've accomplished with Google News. And I'm excited to do even more to help you have a great news experience. For me, some of last year's highlights are:
We made some significant changes to several of our language editions, such as offering a new way of visually depicting the news with our image version, and integrating high quality videos into our news stories.
We increased the relevance of Google News by giving people involved in news stories the ability to comment. This feature has given rise to comments from experts across a varied group of stories, with many notable comments from college professors, attorneys, elected officials and others.
In August we launched improved duplicate detection, making it easier for you to eliminate identical stories from search results. We improved the advanced search capability and launched it internationally, to help you surface the content you care about.
In December we introduced significant ranking improvements to many of our editions, which allows us to properly highlight important local sources in languages where we're including sources from around the world. It also improves our ability to surface the most recent articles published about a breaking story.
News on other properties
A renewed focus in 2007 was to improve the way you get your news on other properties. In October we launched a new iGoogle gadget for a richer and more advanced news experience within iGoogle. We also tried our first experiment in social news by launching a Facebook application where people could both read and share the news.
It's important to us to include as much of our publishers' content as possible, so that we can provide a more diverse news experience for you. Our bot can sometimes have difficulty crawling all of the great content from our sources, so in 2006 we launched Webmaster Tools for News, which allows English-language publishers to submit content to Google News and see error reports for articles our bot wasn't able to crawl. In 2007, we enabled Webmaster Tools for publishers in all languages.
While we feel we accomplished a good deal in 2007, we hope to accomplish even more this year. Please keep telling us what you think about our new features, and what new features would really make you happy.