Google on Thursday named the 29 winners of the third Google News Initiative (GNI) Innovation Challenge, including five Nigerians, who were selected from Turkey, Israel, the Middle East, and Africa.
According to Ludovic Blecher, Head of Innovation, Google News Initiative, the honorees were chosen for their achievements in encouraging diversity, equality, and inclusion in the journalism business, .
According to Blecher, the grantees from 17 different nations were chosen to receive $3.2 million in funding for 34 projects.
He said that Google’s $300 million commitment to supporting journalism’s success in the digital age included the GNI Innovation Challenge.
He claims that GNI has witnessed news innovators come forth with a variety of fascinating activities that exhibit fresh thinking.
“This year, we seek to broaden our criteria to include digital innovation initiatives that promote goals like reader engagement, new reader income, subscriptions, and disinformation among other things.
“Following a thorough assessment, a round of interviews, and a final jury selection, 34 projects from 17 countries were chosen to receive $3.2 million in funding.
“The recipients met all the five criteria requirements including impact on the news ecosystem, equity and inclusion, inspiration, innovation, diversity, and feasibility,” he said.
He claims that WANANCHI Reporting from Kenya, Dubawa from Nigeria, and Quote This Woman+ from South Africa are some of the receivers.
According to Blecher, the Nigerian digital platform Dubawa assisted newsrooms in finding and obtaining high-quality images from regional African photographers and photojournalists.
According to him, ATLAS first focused on hosting editorial and journalistic photographs from Nigerian and other local African photographers that anybody could easily download.
According to Blecher, 42 countries submitted a total of 425 applications for the 2022 challenge, a 27% increase over the previous year.
When compared to prior innovation challenges in the area, he noted that there had been a notable rise in applications from news organizations conducting fact-checking operations, at 118%.
He claimed that the suggested projects utilizing AI and ML had seen a substantial increase of 92%, demonstrating a tendency toward embracing cutting-edge new technologies and data.
South Africa, Kenya, Morocco, Nigeria, the Congo, Burkina Faso, Egypt, Niger, Uganda, and Burundi were among the receivers, according to Blecher.