TRAFFIC to Spain’s news websites has plummeted following Google’s decision to disable its News section in Spain.
Spanish newspapers have seen a drop of between 10-15% since the shutdown on December 16, according to Chartbeat, which tracks 50 Spanish news sites.
Google took the decision to disable its News service in Spain in response to a new intellectual property legislation which comes into effect on January 1.
The new law – labelled ‘Google Tax’ – requires search engines to pay a fee to Spanish publishers for the right to post snippets of stories.
Head of Google News, Richard Gingras, said the Spanish law was ‘not sustainable’ and made no sense seeing as ‘Google News itself makes no money’.
He added: “It’s with real sadness that we remove Spanish publishers from Google News, and close Google News in Spain.”