Facebook to Experiment with Hosting Publishers' Content

Mar 25, 2015

In its quest to dominate your online experience, Facebook has revealed--or, rather, the New York Times has reported--its plans to start hosting media sites' content, rather than simply being a repository for links to outside content. According to the New York Times, the social media giant has been talking to media companies about hosting their content. (I wouldn't be surprised if these talks were at least part of the inspiration for Pangaea, a network of publishers who have come together to pool their audiences for ad buyers.)

The Times spoke with people who have been privy to the discussions with Facebook, but remained anonymous because of nondisclosure agreements. According to the article, Facebook will be testing this format over the next several months. Along with the Times, National Geographic, and BuzzFeed will be Facebook's initial partners. Facebook has said that publishers will be able to make money from advertisements alongside the content.


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Several publishers have come together to form an ad alliance, pooling audiences to combat the like of Google and Facebook, whose massive audiences often draw ad dollars away from content providers. The Economist, CNN, The Guardian, Reuters, and The Financial Times have formed a programmatic ad network in order to pool their audiences and allow advertisers to buy up space across all of these audiences. That audience is about 110 million readers, according to the alliance's website.