Insights, tools and research to advance journalism

Emily Bell: Facebook is being turned into something it doesn’t want to be, ‘the underpinning framework of a free press’

Columbia Journalism Review

“Facebook is finding itself under almost constant pressure to be more transparent, despite the fact that by the standards of some legacy media it is the model of openness,” Emily Bell writes. “Facebook is being taken somewhere it never wanted to go — into being the underpinning framework of a free press. The weakened news institutions that have seen advertising revenue drain into more efficient systems are now relying more heavily on Facebook to provide costly parts of the publishing business such as advertising sales and new publishing tools. Newsrooms reconfigure around what Facebook says it wants, even if this turns out to be a fruitless pursuit.”

+ George Brock on how Facebook should think about news: Facebook should ignore the debate about whether it’s a “media company,” accept that it does have responsibilities, and shouldn’t be afraid to put its ideas out there (George Brock)

+ “All media companies — legacy and digital — need to radically diversify digital traffic sources. It is the fault of media companies — not Facebook — that we got hooked on this distribution channel,” Earl J. Wilkinson argues (INMA) and Axel Springer’s CEO Mathias Döpfner warns that if traditional media organizations don’t come to an agreement with Facebook and Google, they won’t survive(Financial Times); How Slate is trying to wean itself off Facebook traffic: It identified a set of metrics that represented loyalty and set a goal of increasing those metrics by 20 percent this year (Digiday)

Read More

Need to Know newsletter

The smart way to start your day

Each morning we scour the web for fresh useful insights in our Need to Know newsletter. Sign up below.

The American Press Institute

Our mission

We help transform news organizations for an audience-centered future.

Our programs for publishers focus on four things:

  • 1. Understand your audience
  • 2. Get your audience to pay
  • 3. Transform your culture
  • 4. Do your best journalism
  • Find out more about API »

API solutions for publishers

What we can do for you

API offers a suite of original tools and services for solving the biggest challenges in news:

  • Decide what beats to cover and how
  • Identify and develop the skills you need
  • Assess and improve your culture
  • Drive more reader revenue
  • Drive loyalty through accountability journalism
  • Make analytics work for you
  • Contact us to find out how »