Google Australia have dropped a big bit of news at the launch of their new purpose-built, 6 star green, Google Campus here in Pyrmont, Sydney.

Google’s Australian MD, Karim Temsamani, has just announced a partnership with Fairfax Media – they are to digitise and make searchable Fairfax’s entire archive of newspapers, dating back to the late 1880s. The content will look online as it looked at the time of publication – headlines, pictures, everything – an analogue look and a digital brain.

In light of recent comments from media players about the free content ride the Google News service has taken on the back of old media, this is a significant announcement.