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Don’t be evil, Google: Effects of Google’s Digital News Initiative on Media Coverage in Switzerland


Progin, Jonathan. Don’t be evil, Google: Effects of Google’s Digital News Initiative on Media Coverage in Switzerland. 2022, University of Zurich, Faculty of Arts.

Abstract

Google forms the backbone of the digital economy. Recently, the tech company has been criticized for its market power, especially in the media business. The main controversy revolves around Google’s media funding in the form of payments to publishers. It is suspected that Google could control the production and distribution processes of media. Despite investigations, we still do not understand whether and how Google abuses its influence on media. My thesis aims to address this issue and help investigate the possible effects of Google’s funding on media. I examine an extensive dataset consisting of articles from German-language media in Switzerland. Using a state-of-the-art sentiment analysis, I measure whether Google’s Digital News Initiative payments positively or negatively influence coverage of Google. My results found a positive correlation between positive coverage and the Digital News Initiative funding paid out. My thesis demonstrated for the first time how Google’s potential influence on media might operate.

Abstract

Google forms the backbone of the digital economy. Recently, the tech company has been criticized for its market power, especially in the media business. The main controversy revolves around Google’s media funding in the form of payments to publishers. It is suspected that Google could control the production and distribution processes of media. Despite investigations, we still do not understand whether and how Google abuses its influence on media. My thesis aims to address this issue and help investigate the possible effects of Google’s funding on media. I examine an extensive dataset consisting of articles from German-language media in Switzerland. Using a state-of-the-art sentiment analysis, I measure whether Google’s Digital News Initiative payments positively or negatively influence coverage of Google. My results found a positive correlation between positive coverage and the Digital News Initiative funding paid out. My thesis demonstrated for the first time how Google’s potential influence on media might operate.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Master's Thesis
Referees:Gilardi Fabrizio
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Political Science
Dewey Decimal Classification:320 Political science
Uncontrolled Keywords:Google, digitalization, media, journalism, technology, sentiment analysis, text analysis
Language:English
Date:1 December 2022
Deposited On:08 Feb 2023 14:48
Last Modified:15 Feb 2023 13:26
Number of Pages:95
OA Status:Green
  • Content: Updated Version
  • Language: English
  • Description: Version 2
  • Licence: Creative Commons: Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)