Facebook Could Be Moving Ahead With a Subscription News Service and Paywall

Janie Parker
July 20, 2017

The news of this subscription was announced by a top Facebook executive almost a week after 2000 publishers in the United States formed the News Media Alliance to get an anti-trust exemption from the congress party just to negotiate over advertising revenue with digital platforms.

The New York Times has also pulled out of Instant Articles, while a number of other U.S. based news organisations including Washington Post and LA Times have installed paywalls on their sites and limited the number of articles people can read for read. Right now, Facebook's Instant Articles feature (which loads pages much more quickly directly on Facebook instead of directing you to the publishers' site) lets you skip around some paywalls.

Facebook's head of news partnerships, Campbell Brown, says the current plan is to require payments after reading 10 articles from a publisher through Facebook.

Campbell Brown, who was hired earlier in the year to head up Facebook's partnership team, discussed this subscription service at yesterday's Digital Publishing Information Summit in NY, according to The Street.

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Facebook's head of news partnerships, Campbell Brown, confirmed the subscription service is coming at an industry conference in NY on Tuesday. "And that is something we're doing now".

As per Mr. Brown, the paywall idea is based on premium and metered plans and has been in the works for a while. It is very possible that people will not want to pay for news on Facebook, and will search only for media companies that do not setup the paywall. "We are launching a subscription product", he told the gathering.

To all subscriber data, Facebook will also give access to publications, through which they can understand their audience better. Now publishers are trying to find a way around one of the last barriers to not giving away their content for free: Facebook.

The New York Times is absent from Instant Articles, and several other sites are running little to no content there - including Bloomberg, Wall Street Journal, Forbes, NPR, Financial Times, Hearst, ESPN and CBS News. Facebook will begin initial tests in October, TheStreet reported.

Other reports by TheDailyFarc

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