Google launches Media Tools website in Spanish

By Diego Cruz

Google has launched a Spanish version of its Media Tools website, which gathers all its digital tools with journalistic applications in a single place.

The new site comes after Google launched Media Tools in English last yearClick here to visit the English site.

“Journalists access the web in search of resources which will allow them to tell more and better stories and to connect more directly with their readers and audience,” said Daniel Sieberg, head of media outreach at Google, in the company’s corporate blog. “We believe Google plays an important role in this scenario, primarily as an access point to the web and a bridge uniting information with communities and people."

The site consists of a central welcome platform that serves as a guide to sections covering different tools, which include: Gather and Organize, Engage, Visualize, Publish, Develop and Additional Resources.

The section focused on gathering and organizing information teaches readers how to carry out more effective Internet searches with tools like Google Scholar and Advanced Search, and includes advice on how to exclude search terms (use the minus sign “-“) and search inside of a specific website (write “site:” before the search terms).

The site also explains several tools related to Google searches, like a service that explores search trends and popular searches, as well as translation tools and e-mail alerts about specific topics selected by users.

Another resource section is dedicated to data visualization in the form of maps and graphics that can facilitate readers’ understanding of important data. Google Maps Engine helps journalists construct maps (simple or complex depending on whether one is a beginner or professional) with satellite images to show locations mentioned in articles.

Google also provides pre-designed maps that could be useful for journalists, such as a crisis map for emergency situations. The site’s main page cites The Guardian and Svenska Dagbladet as examples of news media who have used this tool to create a more attractive and interactive experience for their users.

This same section explains how to use Google’s Chart Gallery, which is useful for presenting quantitative data in different formats, like line graphs or hierarchical trees, depending on what is most appropriate for the content.

The section focused on publishing contains information on how to modify a web site so that it is easier to find through Google searches. This includes instructions for making published content more accessible through Google News, which may require technical specifications like URL modifications.

This section also includes instructions for increasing the probability that an image will be found through a Google Images search (for example, include as much information as possible for each image), as well as how to interpret and analyze a website’s analytics data using Google Analytics.

The engagement section includes a guide for journalists or publications interested in reaching their audience through YouTube videos, with links to information about YouTube video trends, most popular videos, updates to the site and ways of improving content quality and growing an audience. ONtv and The Weather Channel are some of the media outlets who successfully use their YouTube channels to share content.

An additional resource that can be useful for journalists is Google Politics & Elections, a web tool that accumulates online political analysis articles organized by country selected and including the most important current events and topics for each of these countries. Google also provides a Transparency Report that informs on how the flow of information online is affected by laws and policies.

These are only a few of the many tools listed and explained in Media Tools, and according to Sieberg the site will be developed and updated constantly in coming months with new resources, case studies and tutorials.

Note from the editor: This story was originally published by the Knight Center’s blog Journalism in the Americas, the predecessor of LatAm Journalism Review.