While many people probably take to Google to search for the latest news, social media has been playing a bigger role in bringing news, both real and fake, to even more people. Of course, this has also brought them under more scrutiny because of the consequences for the news industry in general, particularly when page views, ads, and profits are concerned. Facebook seems to suggest that it is offering the better option for all parties involved as it rolls out Facebook News outside the US for the first time.
In a nutshell, Facebook News is a relatively new section in its app that is, well, all about news. Instead of a simple list of search results, it offers a serving of daily Top Stories curated by humans and News Sections that invite users to dig deeper into topics. Of course, there’s also the promise of complete control as well as personalization options on what users want or do not want to follow.
The features of Facebook News almost comes second to what the social networking giant is really proud of, striking business deals with news outlets and publishers in the UK. In addition to its existing partners like The Guardian, The Economist, and The Independent, among others, Facebook has also added Channel 4 News, Daily Mail Group, and Financial Times to its roster, among others.
Facebook wants to remind everyone that it has been partnering with news organizations for many years and has been trying to work out a sustainable business model in the age of the Internet. In fact, this infusion from Facebook is expected to boost the local news industry, especially during these trying times. Facebook even says it is continuing not only to invest more in news but also to pay publishers for more content in more countries.
This almost sounds like a subtle jab at Google’s current situation regarding its own news offering in other countries, particularly in the European Union, which the UK is no longer part of, and Australia. Google has recently agreed to pay news publishers in France but has threatened to makes Google News unavailable in Australia should the government regulatory body push its demands.