Facebook seems to show no sign of slowing its advancements over the last several weeks. Now, the social media site is making strides into the world of journalism with its new newswire service.
Storyful is a news agency that aggregates news content from social media networks. Facebook’s recent partnership with Storyful means that Facebook will have global insight into the news it aggregates. Storyful has three offices across three different continents that constantly aggregates and verifies the news it receives.
The plan is that an algorithm would be used to find breaking and popular news stories on Facebook, and then that would become the nexus of the newswire service offered by Facebook. Journalists would then follow up on the stories to ensure that they are of optimal value, and Storyful says that the emphasis will always be on the human factor.
Facebook is working on trying to stay apace with Twitter, who is currently leading the market as far as breaking news is concerned. Storyful has said that the emphasis will be on quality content, rather than looking at how many stories should be generated on a daily basis. Subscribing to the breaking news stories will be easy, mostly because all anyone would have to do is like the Facebook Newswire page, and stories would crop up automatically in their News Feed.
In August, Facebook began to allow publications to embed posts within stories and in January started a trending topics feature next to the News Feed. Both of these features have resulted in measurable, growing success for the social media company. Referral traffic to news and publishing sites quadrupled in 2013 as a result of these changes.
Andy Mitchell, director of news and global media partnerships at Facebook, says that while Facebook Newswire is designed to primarily target journalists, anyone interested in following the latest news stories is welcome to Like the Facebook Newswire page. While stories will be available in most, if not all international languages, all captions will be available in English.
Mitchell says that providing the newswire service is Facebook’s way of giving people more than one option for accessing their daily breaking news. It is not intended as an attack on Twitter, and he says that he believes Facebook and Twitter to be complementary services rather than being in opposition to each other.
Regardless of whether Facebook and Twitter are viewed as opposites or complementary, it does not seem to matter; the bottom line is that Facebook intends that the newswire service Facebook has begun offering as of this past Tuesday is designed to gather more journalists into the fold and give those interested in daily news a new taste of the daily news.