The Google News Initiative (GNI) has chosen Nine and Junkee Media as the two Australian publishers to receive innovation funding to amp up their online video capabilities and experiment with new formats for video journalism.
Nine and Junkee were among the 87 recipients of the GNI YouTube innovation funding from 23 countries across the world, which also included The New York Times, The Washington Post, The Guardian, and The Economist.
The grants will enable recipients to build key capabilities, train staff on video best practices, enhance production facilities and develop formats optimised for online video.
In July 2018, Google announced the steps it was taking as part of the Google News Initiative to support the future of news in online video and its efforts to improve the news experience on YouTube. This included a US$25 million investment.
This investment focuses on the establishment of a news working group to collaborate with partners to help Google develop new product features and improve the news experience on YouTube.
It also focuses on innovation funding to provide capacity-building grants to news publishers, and an expanded support team for news partners around the world
Tim Duggan, publisher at Junkee Media, said: “We’ve always been at the forefront of innovative new content formats.
“Which is why we’re so thrilled that YouTube’s funding will help us push the boundaries even further and experiment with new ways of informing our audience about news they really care about.
“We’ve got so many exciting ideas we’ve been itching to test out, and this funding will enable us to create them on YouTube in a really meaningful way. We can’t wait to get stuck into it and share our learnings with the rest of the journalism community.”
Junkee will be using the YouTube innovating funding grant to build out its capabilities to support video operations, as well as innovating with new video content that will be published on Junkee’s YouTube channel and beyond in 2019.