Tag Archives: #GoogleCanada

Google News Initiative partners with CJF to help tackle fake news

Editor's Note: today's post is guest authored by Natalie Turvey, President and Executive Director of The Canadian Journalism Foundation 

What role will fake news play in our democracy? Even as we celebrate World News Day and recognize the important role Journalism plays in our lives, this question weighs on the minds of Canadians as we prepare to head to the polls in the fall.

40% of Canadians report finding it difficult to distinguish between truth and misinformation in the news, according to a new poll commissioned by the Canadian Journalism Foundation (with research conducted by Earnscliffe Strategy Group). It also shows that more than half of respondents (53%) have come across stories recently where they believe facts were twisted to push an agenda.

Looking to address concerns over Canadians’ capacity to identify authoritative information online, today the Google News Initiative announced a grant of $1 million to the Canadian Journalism Foundation to bring NewsWise to voting-age Canadians. The goal is simple: help all Canadians understand the difference between fact-based journalism and fake news in the digital world.

The project will support Canadian publishers in educating their audiences on how to understand and navigate an increasingly complex information environment. Developed in collaboration with experts and educators, NewsWise will deliver journalistic context that can help Canadian citizens gauge the reliability of the information they're consuming.

NewsWise builds on the success of its namesake student news literacy program, launched last year by the CJF and CIVIX (the team behind Student Vote). NewsWise is already reaching students in 98 of Canadian school boards.

Google and CJF’s commitment to fact-based journalism comes at a pivotal time for Canada. When asked if this confusion is leading people to not know which politicians to trust, 85% strongly agreed or agreed; up from 56 per cent in 2018. When asked if the average person does not know how to tell good journalism from rumors and falsehood, 74% strongly agreed or agreed; compared to 63% last year. The stakes are high.

Understanding what’s real and what’s not when it comes to the information we consume is essential to a functioning democracy. NewsWise provides Canadians the tools to be engaged and informed citizens of the digital age.

How Canadians are shopping this holiday season

Are you a last-minute shopper? Well, you’re not alone. With only 10 days until the holidays, a new study tells us that Canadians have completed less than half of their holiday shopping!1 But these last-minute shoppers aren’t panicking.

We partnered with Ipsos to survey Canadians on how they’ve used technology to shop this holiday season, and we found that holiday shoppers are using their smartphones, search and online video to be savvier than ever. This year, 34 percent of Canadian shoppers say they always do research or check digital sources before going to the store. Canadians may be last-minute shoppers, but they certainly have a game plan for when they hit the mall.

Today we’re sharing three trends that surfaced during Canada’s peak shopping season:

Smartphones are the ultimate shopping companion

The smartphone is a ubiquitous part of Canada's shopping experience, and when Canadians incorporated smartphone searches into their holiday shopping activities it resulted in a purchase 49 percent of the time. Savvy shoppers are turning to their smartphones to make purchases. Of the transactions that were made online this holiday season, 33 percent were purchased via smartphone.

While more people are willing to buy on mobile, we know that mobile is still used as a personal research assistant in and out of the store. This year, 38 percent of Canadian shoppers that bought in-store used their smartphone to search for products and services, and 74 percent used mobile apps as part of their holiday shopping experience.

Digital research influences purchases

Digital tools like smartphones and online search are friends, not foes, to in-store shopping. Canadian shoppers are conducting online research before they hit the mall to determine what they want to buy, the best products in a given category and which stores to visit to find that they need. We’ve seen mobile searches related to “best” products in the top retail categories grow by more than 44 percent in the last year.2

This year, shoppers are prepared, as one in five Canadian holiday shoppers say they’ve checked prices online before going in store. Almost half (43%), wish retail stores would do a better job of sharing inventory information.

YouTube is the new gift guide

Whether it’s watching a product review or learning how to bake gingerbread cookies, Canadian shoppers look to video in countless moments throughout to the day to help get things done. And this includes shopping. This holiday season, shoppers will turn to devices to learn more, make a decision or purchase a product. This year, 26 percent of holiday shoppers used online video to look at products and services

Whether you’re a last-minute shopper or you’ve checked off your whole list, have a happy holiday!

Posted by Sarah Bradley and Naumi Haque, Research and Market Insights Managers, Google Canada.

1 Google/Ipsos, 2016 Holiday Shopping Study, Nov 17 to Dec 9, 2016, with n=1,387 Canadian shoppers

2 Google internal data, Canada searches related to apparel, home & garden, beauty & personal care, computer & electronics, and gift (excluding terms “best buy,” “best man,” and “best friends”). Jan-March 2015 vs. Jan-March 2016

Official Google Canada Blog 2016-08-18 12:34:00

From Bobcaygeon to the Paris of the Prairies, this Saturday Canadians from across the country and around the world are celebrating an amazing moment in our shared history.

On Saturday, August 20 at 8:30 p.m. ET, CBC Music will broadcast and livestream The Tragically Hip: A National Celebration, the band’s sold out concert in their hometown of Kingston, Ontario, on YouTube.

For over three decades Gord Downie and the Hip have sung of uniquely Canadian moments, memories and places that span Canada’s geography. From Ahead by a Century to At the Hundredth Meridian, the songbook of The Tragically Hip feels at times like an intimate narration of our country’s history.

The band has been flooded with love by fans from Canada and abroad. The Kingston show this Saturday is the last stop on the band’s 15-city tour - one more chance for fans to show their deep appreciation.  And it is this show that the CBC Music is broadcasting and livestreaming on YouTube.

As Canada's national broadcaster, CBC Music is proud to share this celebration of the Tragically Hip with Canadians -- and the world.  No matter where you are this Saturday, tune in to CBC Music’s YouTube livestream to celebrate The Tragically Hip in what is sure to be another beautiful moment of Canadian history.

Posted by: Mark Steinmetz, Senior Director of CBC Music

Meet Google Duo, a simple 1-to-1 video calling app for everyone

Video calling is the next best thing to being with someone in person, but too often it can be a frustrating or complicated experience. You shouldn’t have to worry about whether your call will connect, or if your friend is using the same type of device as you are.

Today, we’re releasing Google Duo — a simple 1-to-1 video calling app available for Android and iOS. Duo takes the complexity out of video calling, so that you can be together in the moment wherever you are.
Google Duo works across Android and iOS - all you need is a phone number

Simple interface
Duo is simple from start to finish. To get started, all you need is your phone number and you’ll be able to reach people in your phone’s contacts list. No separate account is required, so you can sign up in just a few steps. From there, you can instantly begin a video call with a single tap.

Fast and reliable
We all know how it feels when a call fails to connect or when video gets choppy. We’ve built Duo to be fast and reliable, so that video calls connect quickly and work well even on slower networks. Call quality adjusts to changing network conditions to keep you connected -- when bandwidth is limited, Duo will gracefully reduce the resolution to keep the call going smoothly. For video calls on the go, Duo will switch between Wi-Fi and cellular data automatically without dropping your call. You can start your call at home, and continue seamlessly even when you head out the door.

Human design
We designed Duo to feel warm and inviting, focused on just you and the person you’re calling. To make calls feel more like an invitation rather than an interruption, we created a feature in Duo called Knock Knock which lets you see live video of your caller before you answer, giving you a sense of what they’re up to and why they want to chat. Knock Knock makes video calling more spontaneous and welcoming, helping you connect with the person before you even pick up.
Knock Knock in Duo lets you see who’s calling before you pick up

Finally, we built Duo with an emphasis on privacy and security, and all Duo calls are end-to-end encrypted.

Give your friends a wave with Duo! We’re beginning to roll out Duo for Android and iOS today, and it will be live worldwide in the next few days.

Posted by Justin Uberti, Principal Software Engineer

Get ready to explore our national parks and historic sites on #ParksDay!

Editor’s note: Today’s blog is authored by Michael White who works in the Brand Experience Branch at Parks Canada and leads the Agency’s collaboration with Google Maps

Outdoor adventures are the heart and soul of the Canadian summer and there’s no better way to get outside and experience the wonder of our country than with a trip to one of our national parks, national marine conservation areas or national historic sites.

Once again we’ve teamed up with Google to capture more 360 degree imagery from these amazing Parks Canada places. New Street View imagery of  dozens of National Parks and Historic Sites  launches today on Google Street View just in time for Parks Day (July 16th), the annual celebration of Canada’s amazing natural and historic places.

Parks Canada employee collecting Street View imagery from the Bullion Plateau in Kluane National Park and Reserve

Whether you’re planning to spend a day hiking and swimming, planning a week of camping, canoeing and portaging, or travelling back through time in one of Canada’s national historic sites, our parks and historic sites from coast to coast to coast will remind you why Canadian summers are the best summers.

Many Canadians enjoy camping in the great outdoors while visiting one of Canada’s national parks, and when it comes to camping, Canadians have got a lot of questions…


Luckily, Parks Canada has resources to help you plan your camping adventure!

Get started with our Learn to Camp program, which is available in French, English, Chinese (standard and simplified), Punjabi, Spanish and Tagalog. From what to wear and what to bring, to tasty, trail-tested recipes, we’ve got you covered. In the spring of 2017 Parks Canada will also launch an expanded Learn to Camp program that will ensure more low and middle-income families will have an opportunity to experience Canada’s outdoors.  Stay tuned for more information.You can also download the Learn to Camp app for Android and iPhone to reference onsite as needed.

Before you get packed, you can also check out our YouTube channel in both English and French to learn how to set up a tent, how to build a campfire and our tips for planning your trip and camping with wildlife.

Then head over to Google Street View to check out the new images of places like Chilkoot Trail National Historic Site and Kluane National Park in the Yukon, Gwaii Haanas National Park Reserve, Haida Heritage Centre or Gulf Islands National Park Reserve in British Columbia, Banff and Jasper National Parks in Alberta, Batoche National Historic Site in Saskatchewan, Riding Mountain National Park in Manitoba, Pukaskwa and Georgian Bay Islands National Parks in Ontario, Forillon National Park and Saguenay St. Lawrence Marine Park in Quebec, Fundy National Park in New Brunswick, Kejimkujik National Park Seaside or Cape Breton Highlands National Park in Nova Scotia or L’Anse aux Meadows National Historic Site and Gros Morne National Park in Newfoundland and Labrador, and get excited about the great Canadian outdoors this Parks Day!

Posted by Michael White, Parks Canada