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The week we couldn’t find Google News

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Sarah on Wednesday: “Where is the Google News filter?” Us: “Haha what” [continues talking about divorce on Slack] Sarah: [posts succession of screenshots] “Where is the ‘news’ filter?”

Obviously it doesn’t make sense that Google News would disappear, we use that all the time, must be a bug or some crazy Sarah tech issue surely! Except then she asked Google and guess what, they are indeed “testing different ways to show filters on Search” and so some are sporadically disappearing. Is the News filter especially disappearing? Unclear — one person said the shopping filter was also gone — but, I don’t know, in the week where, for instance, now-owned-by-a-private-equity-company Vice said it’s laying off hundreds and “will no longer publish content on” because “it is no longer cost-effective for us to distribute our digital content the way we have done previously” (on a website?) you’d forgive people for being a little alarmed.

Emily Bell, director of the Tow Center for Journalism at Columbia, has a theory that I asked her to elaborate on a little:

Recommended for me in Discover right now: “The hollowing out of Vice and BuzzFeed marks the end of the digital media revolution,” Wirecutter office chair reviews (speaking of product reviews), “What is the magnesum trend about?”, and a week-old article on how they did that with Paul Giamatti’s eye in The Holdovers; that eye article is from The AV Club, a site also now owned by a private equity firm.

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