Newsrooms around the world have been skeptical of Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) after so many “fake news break” in recent times. The California-based social networking site has also been under pressure to curb the spread of these hoax stories. However, in spite of these, Facebook is increasingly eating up the media space, and their relations with the news agencies are hitting rock-bottom.
To improve their relations with newsrooms, Facebook is now investing in journalism training, tools, and news literacy. On Wednesday, they announced the “Facebook Journalism Project”, an umbrella project that will have three parts.
The Facebook Journalism Project
Based out of Menlo Park, Facebook says they will work with news agencies and come up with news products, boost local news, and develop profit centers. There are plans of promoting news literacy as well among the people, which will curb the spread of hoax news. Facebook commented in a post, “The Facebook Journalism Project is designed to support journalism and news literacy, and to serve as a hub for journalists and publishers to learn and share.”
This is good news for the media houses too. Advertising revenues have gone down drastically, circulation has plunged, and the critics are saying media houses are manufacturing news to improve circulation and readership.
The average newspaper circulation both online and print fell by 7 percent in 2015. According to the State of the News Media report of Pew Research Canter, this has been the biggest decline since 2010. Digital circulation has gone up by 2 percent, but this is still a mere 22 percent of the total circulation.
Social networks, on the other hand, have emerged as go-to places for news. 62 percent of adults in the United States get news first in the social media according to Pew Research surveys.
5 Companies Earn 65 Percent of the Revenue
News agencies are losing money. But businesses like Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) are earning more from digital advertising. In fact, 65 percent of the revenue from digital advertising was earned by just five companies, namely Google, Facebook, Microsoft, Yahoo, and Twitter. They made $38.5 billion out of the $59.6 billion that was spent on digital advertisements. This is why Facebook is now acknowledging that they are transforming into a media company from a tech firm.
The Society of Professional Journalists has also welcomed Facebook’s move to start the Journalism Project. Lynn Walsh, the President says, “This is a step in the right direction”.