After sharing the initial details of his the upcoming newsletter platform last month, Facebook has now confirmed the first elements of a new project, which will see how the company pays off $ 5 million funding for local journalists to launch the product and generate initial interest.
As he reported Reuters, New Facebook funding will come in the form multi-year contracts with established writers to basically showcase their newsletter platform and expand interest.
As per Reuters:
“Independent journalists in the United States can apply for the program, which begins Thursday, and priority will be given to journalists who plan to report on” black, indigenous, Latin American, Asian or other color audiences “in places that do not have an existing news source, Facebook said. “
Facebook will work with the International Center for Journalists and the National Association of Spanish Journalists to evaluate applications. They will then provide selected participants with access to experts and services to help them create a newsletter app through the app.
The newsletters came to life again late, with an increasing number of journalists now doing it themselves and generating a solid income by establishing their own, dedicated audience. In addition to the traditional newsrooms struggling, especially during a pandemic, paid newsletter subscriptions offer a viable alternative, with only a relatively small base needed to make it a profitable venture.
This has been seen by platforms such as Substack and Revue working to expand their offerings, and in particular Substack is reportedly offering offers up to $ 300,000 for top writers, in an attempt to entice them and expand their business.
Social platforms now also want to take advantage of the same, using their mass audience reach as bait to help writers connect with the audience, to build a newsletter business based on their presence.
Twitter entered an all-in acquisition earlier this year Review, giving him an instant connection to the newsletter space, which he now wants to translate into integrated Twitter offer, to help users monetize their presence on the platform.
As noted, Facebook has shared some early details of its upcoming newsletter platform last month, which will be integrated with Facebook pages and will allow writers to take advantage of Facebook’s mass reach to build their audience and monetize their work.
Which, of course, could be risky. Facebook has a well-established history of vigorously promoting the type or option of posting, to abandon those who relied on such when they eventually lose interest. AND as we recently saw with Australian publisher shut down,, if you want to build a business through Facebook, you don’t want to rely too much on the platform.
Which is exactly what writers would do through these newsletter offers, transferring their revenue into the hands of a Social Network that could choose to exclude that revenue stream at any time.
One positive note, as recently reported by a former Verge journalist, now independent of the newsletter Casey Newton, is it a Facebook newsletter will allow creators to take their email lists with them if they leave, according to Facebook director Mark Zuckerberg.
This could alleviate some doubts about the offer, with the possibility of going with the audience, if you so choose.
Anyway, if Facebook starts throwing money at writers, you can bet at least some of them will accept.
The question then is, how many newsletters can people take and how many of these writers also underestimate the amount of work it actually takes to create an interesting newsletter, day in and day out, week in and week out?
I can tell you that I write about seven posts every day and it can be hard to keep up with all the latest happenings while consistently pumping up content. Most established writers are aware of this, of course – but by opening up opportunities for less experienced voices, which could create a messy, unwanted situation, which could also potentially diminish the value of the newsletter’s offerings.
One way or another, we seem to be discovering what the limits of the newsletter might actually be. Clean your mailboxes and get ready.