Google Adds Participants’ Comments to News

Google Adds Participants' Comments to NewsHave you ever been interviewed, the later read the piece and thought “That’s not what I said.” With Google News, now you’d be able to do something about it.

The service has begun a feature whereby those named in articles it features can add comments to the stories. According to the company, the aim is “to make the fullspectrum of views and information on a story available to everyone,” and it certainly offers the chance for a quoted person to offer a rebuttal of the way a quote was used (or even sayit’s not what they said at all). As a widely-viewed forum, and by being attached to the story, comments from those quoted in a news story can be seen in context.

It opens up the possibilities of news in an interesting way, although you shouldn’t expect to see it widely used yet, since some of the site’s content is made up of press releases, which hardly requireextra comments from those quoted. However, many of the stories are aggregated from news services and publications.

Of course, there’s more to all this than a quest for veracity in thenews. Google now has a metric to measure news quality, data they could use to, perhaps, give lower placements to publications that generate many complaints.

It’s possible that the addition of comments to stories could lead to claims that Google News violates publishers’ copyrights.

Google news programmers Dan Meredith and Andy Golding made it clear that there’d be a separation of story and comment, however.

“Our long-term vision is that any participant will be able to send in their comments, and we’ll show them next to thearticles about the story. Comments will be published in full, without any edits, but marked as ‘comments’ so readers know it’s the individual’s perspective, rather than part of ajournalist’s report.”