The Google News Lab recalled its biggest achievements in 2017 earlier this month, highlighting some of the key developments in its continuous effort to support the future of journalism and allow newsrooms to facilitate the process of adopting new technologies that can assist them in their work. The Mountain View, California-based Internet giant placed the biggest emphasis on its operations aimed at combating misinformation campaigns during this year's elections in Germany, France, and the United Kingdom. Following the controversy prompted by Russian meddling in the 2016 U.S. presidential election that saw the public place an onus on Google to do a better job of fighting future attempts at any attempts at interference in the democratic processes of sovereign nations, the Alphabet-owned company financed various journalist training initiatives and fact-checking operations aimed at verifying reliable reporting and debunking information that's objectively misleading or factually inaccurate.
As part of a related endeavor, Google developed new trust indicators aimed at informing Search users about the general accuracy of sources whose articles show in their Internet search results and expanded the project to ten languages over the course of this year. The firm also made contributions to some local news initiatives so as to create new opportunities for smaller newsrooms across the United States, whether by training veteran journalists in digital skills or collaborating with the Report for America project that's seeking to create 1,000 local reporting positions across the country. Google also supported a number of initiatives promoting diversity in journalism in the last 12 months and commissioned multiple studies seeking to identify the biggest challenges faced by the contemporary media industry in order to better inform the global community on what lies ahead for journalism.
Various drone-enabled and virtual reality projects were also part of the Google News Lab's recent efforts aimed at demonstrating potential applications of emerging technologies in journalism. The initiative made its way to Asia and Brazil in 2017, two years after originally being established by Google, and has continued financing various training programs for journalists of all ages. The creation of Data Gif Maker, Flourish, and various other tools for journalists was also backed by Google News Lab over the course of this year, as were Google Trends courses aimed at educating media professionals on how to use the company's platform while reporting on various elections. The majority of the tech giant's initiatives are expected to continue next year, and more are likely to be added to the Google News Lab's consistently growing portfolio in the coming months.