Facebook to launch self-publishing platform for writers, journalists to monetize content

By Rjay Zuriaga Castor

PHOTO: The Onion

Social media giant Facebook on Tuesday said it wants to “empower” independent writers and journalists by letting them make money from their work. 

Facebook Inc. confirmed plans to launch a new platform for writers to self-publish their content, grow their audience and make money through monetization tools starting with subscriptions.

The plan to offer a free, customizable publishing tool that allows users to develop websites and email newsletters as well as a charge for subscriptions will roll out in the coming months in the U.S.
 
“A large part of this initiative is aimed at supporting independent local journalists who are often the lone voice covering a given community,” Campbell Brown, Facebook’s VP of global news partnerships, and product manager for news Anthea Watson Strong wrote in a blog post.

The plan also comes after Facebook’s spat with the Australian government over the country’s new law requiring internet platforms to pay for news content — and as other countries agree with similar measures. 

Facebook’s plans also include the intro of a free, self-publishing tool with “robust styling options” to create individual websites and email newsletters. 

The features will be integrated with Facebook Pages to enable publishing across multimedia formats including photos, live videos and stories, according to the company.

Among other features, creators will be able to create Facebook Groups and tap into analytics to monitor how their content is resonating with readers and build audiences. 

The company also intends to launch features “to help audiences easily discover new content and writers,” according to the Facebook execs.

Facebook’s plans also include the intro of a free, self-publishing tool with “robust styling options” to create individual websites and email newsletters. 

Facebook said that since 2018 it has invested $600 million to support journalism and recently said it plans to invest $1 billion in news over the next three years.


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