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Facebook Is Set to Launch News Tab Featuring Premium Content

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by Christopher Hamman · 3 min read
Facebook Is Set to Launch News Tab Featuring Premium Content
Mark Zuckerberg speaks at Georgetown University. Photo: Facebook Newsroom

On Friday, Facebook is set to launch a news tab on users’ timelines which will provide them with access to news stories from hundreds of news organizations.

In what has been seen by many to be a gutsy move Facebook is set to create a separate tab on users’ timelines for news which will be driven by content from major news organizations. Sources indicate that as early as tomorrow the tab will be available on users’ timelines and that the news will come from high authority websites that are owned by major news organizations.

This new initiative is just what Mark Zuckerberg previewed during his testimony. “Later in this week we actually have a big announcement coming up on launching a big initiative around news and journalism where we’re partnering with a lot of folks to build a new product that’s supporting high-quality journalism,” said he when asked about Facebook’s responsibility in the aspect of media literacy.

This, of course, puts Facebook back in the news business which it has shied away from since the last American presidential elections and the Cambridge Analytica scandal which has seen the social media giant face extreme scrutiny over the kinds of news sources which go viral on its platform. It appears however that Mark Zuckerberg has decided to dip his toes back in the digital news pond but with a different strategy this time.

Using a small team of editors, bloggers and journalists who will curate a minuscule amount of the content being delivered to the news tab, a vast majority of the news content will be based on matching interests, shares, likes, and conversations which will be powered by deep learning algorithms. This will make Facebook compete with other automated news curation systems such as Yahoo News, MSN news and of course the Google news itself.

Facebook also intends to include stories from up to 200 major news organizations for starters which include The Washington Post, the Wall Street Journal, Business Insider, BuzzFeed News and news sources from within immediate environments of the user although it has been rumored that the New York Times will also join but as to the veracity of that the situation is still unclear.

The news interests range from a wide variety and will feature all kinds of stories some of which will be subscription-based. Although Facebook has been tight-lipped about the upcoming launch, sources suggest that a pre-planned event is already in the works for tomorrow featuring Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and Newcorp CEO Robert Thomson in New York which is by invitation only. A cursory perusal of the invite indicates “a first look at Facebook news”.

In a statement Campbell Brown, Facebook’s vice president for global news partnerships and a former CNN journalist indicated:

“Working with the news industry to get Facebook’s News tab right is our goal and focus this year. We are getting tremendous partner feedback on the product, and looking forward to launching this very soon,” 

“I believe we can provide people on Facebook a better news experience,” continued he.

While this may also create a new experience for Facebook users, the social media giant remains haunted by ghosts from its history and it remains unclear as to how it will redeem itself from the scourge of fake news in the past.

News, Social Media, Technology News
Christopher Hamman

Christopher Haruna Hamman is a Freelance content developer, Crypto-Enthusiast and tech-savvy individual. He is also a Superstar Content Developer, Strategy Demigod, and Standup Guy.

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