Google announced today that it collaborates with a number of news organizations to transfer more data from their data profiling projects into search results. The idea here is to make it easier to discover the data that many of these organizations produce and then fill it in an easy-to-read format on the company's search results pages.
The company is currently working with a few news organizations, including ProPublica, to produce structured data in the format it needs for its search index. As long as the data is in a table, it is added to the index, it should be quite fine.
"As a news agency focusing on real effects, it's very much our mission to provide people with information on demand," said Scott Klein, deputy editor of ProPublica. "If we can make the data we have worked hard to collect and prepare ourselves at the moment when they are investigating a big life decision, thus helping them make the best decision they can, it's an absolute non-brainer for us. And the code is trivial to add. "
Any news organizations that produce this kind of data can follow Google's policies and get their data indexed. For the right queries, the result of being prime position on Google search results pages, is probably worth the effort. The first result is all that matters.
It's worth noting that Google already indexes and highlights many other data it finds online, but this is the first time it makes a common effort to include journalism projects.