However, when news content is lacking or not well-reported, it can deter one from receiving accurate information and thus the ability to make accurate and reliable decisions.
In other words – people benefit from good journalism. Good journalism covers multiple viewpoints that people are interested and able to follow and discover more for themselves.
And now, it will be even easier to gain access to good journalism: Facebook has recently announced its new feature, Facebook News. Separate from Facebook’s News Feed and developed as a dedicated tab – Facebook News is set up in partnership with the journalism industry.
What this means is that users will now be able to catch up on the latest news on the social media platform, with the added advantage of having it personalised based on their individual interests.
5 Key Features of Facebook News
Facebook News was built as a space for users to have easy access to a wide range of news within Facebook. Upon speaking to people from the industry, including news organisations – 5 key features were identified to boost its effectiveness and differentiate itself from traditional news channels.
- Today’s Stories
Today’s Stories showcases the top stories of the day. The news displayed here will be manually chosen by a team of dedicated journalists. The team will have full editorial independence and will abide by the Facebook’s Publisher Guidelines for the selection of the news stories.
Personalisation is done according to the news users are reading, sharing and following. This customised page will allow users to discover the latest news and trending topics based on their likes and interests. Facebook News will constantly be filled with fresh content each time a user visits.
- Topic sections
The Topic sections allow Facebook users to explore a range of news themes extensively on their own. These themes include business, health, sports and entertainment.
- Your Subscriptions
This is a separate section set aside for Facebook users who have linked their paid news subscriptions to their account.
The Controls section is meant for users to hide the various topics, articles and publishers that they do not wish to see.
4 Categories of Publishers
Facebook News will be featuring a myriad of articles across 4 different categories of publishers. They are namely: general news, topical news, local news and diverse news.
- General News
Publishers provide coverage on an extensive range of news topics such as sports, business, politics, and many more.
- Topical News
Publishers are in charge of a specific news vertical; users will find content that covers a particular niche or topic, such as entertainment and science.
- Diverse News
This section covers news on topics regarding racial and ethnic divisions.
- Local News
Facebook is looking to first test this category out in 10 cities in the U.S., and eventually intends to expand to another 6000 U.S. towns and cities.
That being said, Facebook News is without a doubt, an amazing chance to grow and tap into an abundant source of users who are waiting to be engaged. It enables news organisations to gain new subscribers and extend their Facebook reach even further – if you are a publisher, this is the perfect opportunity to craft similar content as part of your social media marketing efforts.
It looks like Facebook News is an up-and-coming method that perfectly bridges the gap between good journalism and the interests of users.