One of the main issues Google has, especially with fresh news content, is figuring out where the first story or original story came from. Often you will see hundreds of different news agencies writing about the same news story, non citing where they got the news from. They all want to be known as the best, most accurate and breaking source of the news.
Google News announced a new set of meta tags that allow publishers to tell the truth. They want publishers to use the tag to either admit they are not the original source or lie and say they are the original source.
(1) syndication-source meta tag: Use this code <meta name="syndication-source" content="http://www.publisherX.com/wire_story_1.html"> when you want to say if Publisher X syndicates stories to Publisher Y.
(2) original-source meta tag: Use this code to say you are the original source: <meta name="original-source" content="http://www.example.com/burglary_at_watergate.html">
Google admitted they are "experimenting" with this and will see where it takes them.
Personally, I'd be shocked if it was used write by the main stream media.