15 September 2008

Google Opens Newspaper Archive

Search giant Google has launched a new feature which enables users to read newspapers from the past online.

Google News Archive Search is designed to bring readers digitised copies of printed newspapers in their original layouts.

The Google Blog reveals that the new initiative will allow users to search by event, headline, photograph or advertisement in order to find the archive article they’re looking for.

Readers can access the search through Google News and results will also bring up archived editions housed on the websites of participating newspapers, such as the New York Times.

However, many of these are on a pay-per-view service and visitors looking for free historical content should use the advanced search option and select No Prices.

I tested out the search by using the term D-Day Landings and opting for free archive content only.

Within the first ten results were links to scanned versions of original news stories about the landings from newspapers such as the St Petersburg Times and the Evening Independent.

The pages open in the Google News Archive window, where you can zoom in or out and browse other pages from the issue.

And this represents only the tip of the iceberg of Google’s ambitions with archive newspapers and magazines.

The blog post explains: “This effort is just the beginning. As we work with more and more publishers, we’ll move closer towards our goal of making those billions of pages of newsprint from around the world searchable, discoverable, and accessible online.”

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