Inside Google & Alphabet - June 13th, 2019

Inside Google & Alphabet (Jun 13th, 2019)

Anne Frank / Pixel 4 / Throwback Thursday: Google News & Spain

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1. Google Arts & Culture created an Anne Frank exhibit to celebrate her 90th birthday. The new exhibit lets visitors walk through Anne Frank's childhood home in Amsterdam, where she lived for nine years. Last year, the Anne Frank House released a VR exhibit of the annex where the Frank family, who were Jewish, hid from Nazi persecution during World War II. They were eventually found out, and Anne Frank died of typhus in a concentration camp. -- CNET

2. Google has responded to Pixel 4 rumors by ... releasing a picture of the Pixel 4. The picture didn't come with much commentary, so there are still rumors about Project Soli floating around. It does appear that the back of the Pixel 4 has dual lenses, an upgrade from other recent Google phones, but it lacks a fingerprint sensor. The Pixel 4 doesn't even have an official release date yet, but it's expected in October. -- LIFEHACKER AUSTRALIA

3. Throwback Thursday: Spain and Google News go toe-to-toe. The kerfuffle about Google News, kicked off by The New York Times this week, reminded me of a time when Spain also felt that Google was making too much money off its news publishers, and decided to do something about it.

In 2014, Spain passed an intellectual property law that required news aggregators to pay for the news story snippets they used. No doubt this was aimed straight at Google News. 

Google saw the law and did what it felt was the only choice — it shut down Spain's version of Google News in December 2014. 

This shutdown didn't hurt Google much, but Spanish news publishers felt it, with a traffic drop that was bad for everybody but harder on smaller news outlets. In an attempt to remedy the traffic slowdown, the Spanish Newspaper Publishers Association (AEDE) even tried to get Spain's government to force Google News to stay available in Spain. 

That didn't work; Google News has been unavailable in Spain since Dec. 16, 2014.

4. Google has apparently fired some of its lobbying firms. This according to the Wall Street Journal, and on the heels of spending over $21 million in lobbying in 2018. That was the top corporate lobbying spend for the second year in a row. Google has reportedly fired about half a dozen firms which represented about half of its 2018 lobbying costs. This might be a part of a larger restructuring at Google as it prepares for a U.S. antitrust investigation that seems almost inevitable. -- CNBC

5. Google is walking back the idea of crippling ad blockers in Chrome. The move comes after a lot of incendiary feedback from users. -- ZDNET

6. CCN might not shut down after all. The cryptocurrency news site was going to shut its doors after suffering a huge traffic drop  from Google's June search engine algorithm update, but unexpected visibility from an old domain name may alleviate some of the damage. -- COINTELEGRAPH

7. Google CEO Sundar Pichai apparently sent an email to LGBTQ+ employees promising a review of YouTube's content moderation policies. -- THE VERGE

8. Google is ending syncing between Google Drive and Google Photos. Google says users found it confusing. I'll give that an amen. -- NEOWIN

9. The Verge got a hands-on look at Google Stadia and played "Doom Eternal" on a Pixelbook. Google confirmed that the server streaming the game was remote and not one brought in for the event. -- THE VERGE  

10. Vietnam's government is asking companies not to advertise on YouTube videos which contain "anti-state propaganda". -- REUTERS

Tara Calishain has been writing about search engines since 1996, when she wrote the Official Netscape Guide to Internet Research. She's since authored or co-authored several other search-related books, including Google Hacks. Tara is obsessed with all things related to online information collections. You can say hi at @ResearchBuzz on Twitter.

Editing team: Kim Lyons (Pittsburgh-based journalist and managing editor at Inside), David Stegon (senior editor at Inside, whose reporting experience includes cryptocurrency and technology), and Bobby Cherry (senior editor at Inside, who’s always on social media).

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