In order to improve the relationship of Facebook with local publishers, the social media giant has started testing various products to connect users to local news. These tests are a part of Facebook Journalism Project, which has just started. The primary aim of this project is to help people discover and engage with news outlets in their communities.
The initial tests are being conducted on three products. The first product aims to community-link Facebook groups to the additional local news. Another product in the lineup offers users to make their city of residence public and a badge that identifies them as a local resident when they comment on a local publisher’s stories. The particular product will be launching on Tuesday. The third product aims to help people and local groups for connecting in a better way.
All these tests are also focusing on assisting people in discovering local news and meaningfully engage with their community. The team is working to establish baseline metrics to provide availability and discoverability of news and identify levers that help users in absorbing news, share and form community around local content.
These tests will also help administrators of groups which discuss the news on a regular basis to add local news units to the group. With this, the local news classifier will identify the news from a specific location and then provide links to the users that are relevant to them. Members will be able to share an article from the unit just as a link.
Local publisher posts will also display a badge that will identify the residents based on the public current city of the user. These badges will be allotted to all the users who meet the location requirements of a particular city or locality. With the help of badges, the engagement between the users will increase at a rapid pace. Once a user reads the article from a particular publisher in a particular group, Facebook will further promote the publisher to post more in the particular group to increase engagement.
A relevant local group is classified which has at least three local news publisher links which aware published within the last 28 days. Publishers are demanding new ways to connect with the local people of their community and these tests will probably come up with effective ways to share, connect and spread information within local communities.