On May 12 the Korea IT Times web site became a Google News site, something which is not an easy task. But if you follow this guide, you can become a Google News site too.
In order to qualify, you must have an extremely well-ordered web page with a perfect array of articles. Google has a list of 15 technical requirements that your site must follow in order to be considered as a News site, mostly regarding the structure of your content. This is to make it easy for Google to detect when you have updated content, and also make it easy for them to process and display it.
So Many Technical Requirements
The most important guideline is about article URLs. Each article must have a unique URL, be permanent, and include a 3 digit number somewhere within it. You should use some sort of automated article creation script in order to create article URLs that qualify. Also, the number cannot be a date. This was the most difficult for the Korea IT Times to comply with because our web site design included the article title as a URL, which was very human readable and friendly, and we were reluctant to add in a non-friendly 3+ digit number to make the URL more confusing. However, in the end, we had no choice.
The second guideline is one that we actually violated before the move to the new site - having articles on another domain. Our previous web site was www.itimes.co.kr, but many of our articles were located at www.kdcstaffs.com, a domain of our sister company. This kind of setup is not acceptable for Google News sites, however. Our new site contains all articles at www.koreaittimes.com.
Google also only accepts articles in one language. Multiple-language pages are not processed, most likely because Google divides its news content by language. Also, the article must be in text, no video, podcasts, or PDF formats are accepted.
Where's the Guide
This long list of requirements can be a tall order for any webmaster looking to code a web site from scratch. The number of automated parts of a web site that are required to comply with all of this are daunting. Thankfully, the open-source community has already solved these problems. Drupal, with a ProsePoint installation profile, is set up to comply with every single one of these regulations by default, except for the article URLs containing a 3 digit number, which can be configured in about five minutes. So, the best and fastest way to technically qualify to be a Google News site is to use ProsePoint.
After that, simply search Google for "Submit site Google News" to find the most current page to submit your site for consideration. After that it should take about a week before you hear back. If you are accepted, then congratulaitons! You can have your content available to the whole world within 10 minutes.