Facebook argues it needs to Empower independent journalists and authors by encouraging them to benefit from their work. It is soon going to launch a self-publishing platform for Writers with Monetization Support.
On Tuesday, the social media behemoth announced plans to launch a digital forum for authors to self-publish their work, expand their following, and earn money through monetization tools that will begin with subscriptions. The app will be available in the United States in the coming months, according to Facebook.
In the growing newsletter/self-publishing market, Facebook’s new platform will face a number of rivals, including Substack and Twitter, which is preparing to launch “Super Follows,” which will enable individual users and publishers to raise money from subscriptions.
In a blog post, Campbell Brown, Facebook’s VP of global news collaborations, and product manager for news Anthea Watson Strong wrote, “A significant part of this effort is targeted at helping independent local journalists who are frequently the sole voice serving a particular group.”
The step follows Facebook’s spat with the Australian government over the country’s new law forcing internet outlets to pay for news material, as well as other countries considering similar legislation. News Corp, owned by Rupert Murdoch, signed a three-year deal with Facebook to cover the media company’s Australian news channels on Monday.
The introduction of a free self-publishing tool with “robust style options” to build individual websites and email newsletters is one of Facebook’s plans. According to the group, this will be incorporated with Facebook Pages to allow posting through multimedia formats such as images, live videos, and stories. Indie authors and journalists will now be able to build Facebook Groups and use metrics to see how their content is performing.
According to Facebook executives, the firm now plans to deliver features “to help users quickly find new material and writers.” Facebook claims to have spent $600 million in media since 2018 and recently announced plans to spend $1 billion in news over the next three years.