Facebook Exec Outlines Anti Fake News Service Called Watch

There's a new chapter in Facebook's ongoing battle against the spread of fake and misleading news, with the social media giant now reportedly preparing to launch its own news service. In fact, the company will be pulling in hosts from no fewer than three existing and competing news sources for its all original program. According to the company's head of global news partnerships, Campbell Brown, the shows are expected to air on a video service called Watch and to begin airing on the site within just a few months. That's if Facebook can successfully organize all of the details, which may be more difficult than it sounds. The company has had a fair amount of difficulty with publicity and is looking to make up for that by putting together a diverse lineup of presenters who also happen to be good at capturing the attention of audiences. In this case, it plans to enlist CNN's Anderson Cooper, Univision's Jorge Ramos, and Fox News' Shepard Smith.

The service's shows wouldn't be produced by Facebook either since the goal is to remove as much bias, fake news, and clickbait as possible. Instead, Brown says that three separate companies and other news organizations will be taking care of production. Content will also be brought in from ABC News, Alabama Media Group, ATTN:, and Mic - with even more partnerships in the works to fill in any gaps intermittently. The rate at which shows appeared on Watch would vary, presumably with acting producers making the final call as to which hosts would be responsible for what content.

Of course, this wouldn't be Facebook if the company's social media-based features weren't a part of the mix and there wasn't any ad revenue. On some of the shows and stories shared via Watch, polls and other similar tools would be implemented to gauge audience responses. Those may also serve as a good way to open the door for dialogue since polls can give a better idea of how popular or unpopular a given idea is. Meanwhile, the show will be free and ad-supported, with Facebook including some ad revenue as part of its payments to the networks and news organizations. Brown did not say whether or not the service would be limited or free to every platform on which Facebook has a presence. So it's impossible to say whether or not it will be available in the Facebook app or on Android as a standalone app. With that said, this project is still relatively early in development. More information about the service will likely be released as its launch approaches and details are finalized.

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