Media Mix: Facebook’s Control Over the News

Photo via Getty Images.

Photo via Getty Images. (Photo: Karen Bleier/Getty Images)

Facebook is changing (has changed?) the way people read news. The ten-year-old social network now has a fifth of the world — about 1.3 billion people — logging on at least monthly and drives up to 20 percent of traffic to news sites. Facebook decides what stories get prominent placement, and by extension, what news organizations get traffic. “We try to explicitly view ourselves as not editors,” said Greg Marra, a 26-year-old Facebook engineer in charge of writing the code that determines what gets shared in a user’s News Feed. (The New York Times)

But most news stories just don’t look that great on mobile, which is how many people use Facebook and end up opening links to outside content. One possible fix would be “for publishers to simply send pages to Facebook that would live inside the social network’s mobile app and be hosted by its servers; that way, they would load quickly with ads that Facebook sells. The revenue would be shared,” writes David Carr. But of course, that is a worrisome outcome for publishers. “Media companies would essentially be serfs in a kingdom that Facebook owns.” (The New York Times)

Scandal in Canada: Shortly after Jian Ghomeshi was fired from his position as the host of CBC’s current affairs show Q, the popular Canadian broadcaster posted a note on Facebook, explaining that he was dismissed because a vengeful ex-girlfriend was threatening to expose and misrepresent details of his adventurous bedroom behavior and preferences. (The Globe and Mail)

Whisper CEO suspended staff, including editor in chief Neetzan Zimmerman, after The Guardian‘s investigations into just how anonymous the anonymous secret-sharing app really is prompted calls for a senate inquiry. (The Guardian)

T, the Times luxury magazine, turned 10 and is the prettiest girl at the party. (Capital)

 

 

Media Mix: Facebook’s Control Over the News