TheNFAPost Podcast

The Google News app will send users directly to publishers’ own web pages, rather than being sent to AMP pages.

Earlier Google had announced that it would begin supporting non-AMP content in Google News as part of the page experience update. The update was launched in June with no mention of expanded support for web content in Google News. Apparently that update wasn’t quite ready at the time.

Google is giving news publishers a heads up via email of this update being available within weeks. As Google says, if the publication is already included in Google News there’s no further action required.

Previously, utilizing AMP was a requirement for inclusion in Google News. Many publishers have been against AMP since its introduction, as it comes with the trade-off of giving up control over on-page assets. As a result, that left a lot of publishers out of Google News who may have wanted to be in it if not for the AMP requirement.

Publishers have to manually apply and meet a set of criteria in order to have their articles surfaced in Google News. As a result of the shift to surfacing publishers’ webpages, Google News will no longer directly render article text provided in an RSS feed.

With that capability being removed, functionality in the Publisher Center relating to feed-based article rendering will also be removed. This includes custom Analytics tracking IDs and 3rd party tracking pixels used to track in-app reads, as well as custom RSS styling and feed ads.

The changes are expected to go into effect in early November. Google will remind publishers about this change again before it goes live.

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