Google news alerts

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Search engine giant Google introduced a feature it called google news alerts in August, 2003.[1]

The google search engine provided its users with an option to restrict their searches to articles, audio and video published by news agencies.[2] And, with the news alert feature, they introduced a feature not offered by rival companies' search engines, a feature that allowed users to request being told when a new development occurred on a topic they had searched for news.

Google added a button to the search results from news searches, that would create ongoing searches. Google would need to know certain parameters for the search, including:

  1. Email address: The email address where google should mail the new news matches.
  2. Language: The language restriction the search engine should confine itself to. Users could, for instance, confine their request to news articles in English. Alternately, they could request being advised of developments in all languages.
  3. Region: Local, worldwide, etc
  4. Frequency: Choices include "as it happens", "once a day"

When first introduced google labelled the news alert as a "beta function". When first introduced users were limited to just 50 news alert search terms per email address.[1]

In 2021, with little fanfare, google deprecated the news alert feature. They removed it from the results pages for news searches. It was still possible to create new news alerts. Google continued to send email to their users for the news alerts they had already created. And each of those emails contained a link to a page that allowed them to modify the search terms, for that search. As of April 2021, this interface, reached by clicking on the "edit alert" button in their emails, could be used to create new news alerts.


  1. 1.0 1.1 Loren Baker (2003-08-06). "Google Adds Google News Alerts". Search Engine Journal. Archived from the original on 2021-11-09. Retrieved 2021-04-07. "Users can enter any search term into the Google News Alerts system and have the choice of receiving email updates as the news happens, or via a daily summary." 
  2. John Simek (September 2008). "Watching the Digital Radar with Google News Alerts Technology: Hot Buttons". Law Practice 34 (6): 20. Retrieved 2021-04-07. "One of the best ways to monitor information that can be make-or-break in your practice is the savvy use of Google News Alerts.".