Facebook has launched its new curated news portal in the United Kingdom, marking the social media giant's first market outside of the US. Facebook News will also sport news sections dedicated to sports, entertainment, health, and science and technology. Data can generate incredible commercial insights, and the launch of Facebook News will provide news publishers a much needed boost.
Facebook News comprises daily news articles curated by a dedicated team of journalists. The Economist, The Guardian, The Independent, STV and hundreds of local news sites from Archant, Iliffe, JPI Media, Midlands News Association, and Reach.
Jesper Doub, Director News Partnerships, Europe says Facebook News puts "original journalism in front of new audiences and provides publishers with more advertising and subscription opportunities to build sustainable businesses for the future".
Facebook is also continuing in "active negotiations" with other markets, such as France and Germany, over a possible future rollout of the news hub. It comes as the tech industry's relationship with the media comes under increased scrutiny.
The content licensing deal is worth millions to publishing partners, providing a timely financial boost at a time of starvation as Facebook hoovers up an ever-increasing share of the ad market. Your News Feed will still include articles shared by people and pages you follow.
But when the Australian government proposed a new law that would force Google and Facebook to pay news publishers for the right to link to their content, Google threatened to pull the widely used search engine out of the country.
At the end of last year, the social network also announced it was extending its Community News Project for another year. Facebook News provides a more efficient and organized way of providing quality news content around the country, creating a central hub for the stories of the day.
"Besides the financial and operational risks that can not be managed if this version of the code becomes law, it will give us no real choice but to stop making Google search available in Australia", Mel Silva, managing director of Google Australia and New Zealand, told a Senate committee last week.