Media Insider: Facebook Watch Creates New Program To Fund Publisher Shows, BuzzFeed News Employees Plan To Unionize, NAJA launches Indigenous Investigative Collective

Welcome to Media Insider, PR Newswire’s round-up of media stories from the week.

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Facebook Watch has a new program to fund publisher shows starring influencers

In an effort to work closer with publishers and influencers, Facebook has created a new funding program for new shows on Facebook Watch. The shows — which would include topics ranging from entertainment, news, and sports — would be funded by Facebook, produced by the production partner, and starring influencers with a huge number of followers on Facebook, Instagram and other social platforms. Facebook plans to stay committed to funding Facebook Watch shows in 2019 and “is looking to fund as many as six to eight shows per publisher or production partner,” Digiday reports.

Related: Facebook Exec: ‘Buffy,’ ‘Angel’ and ‘Firefly’ Streams Meant to Get People Talking

‘Not All Fun and Memes’: BuzzFeed News Employees Plan to Form a Union

In response to BuzzFeed laying off roughly 15 percent of its work force, employees at the company’s news division announced plans to form a union. Of the 220 employees who lost their jobs, the cuts included all seven members of the BuzzFeed News national desk and six members of its nine-person national security team. The organizing committee said in a statement that their “staff has been organizing for several months, and we have legitimate grievances about unfair pay disparities, mismanaged pivots and layoffs, weak benefits, skyrocketing health insurance costs, diversity and more.” According to the article, if the company recognizes the union, a certification with the NewsGuild would follow. Whereas, if the union does not get recognized, the organizers will hold a union election with an official from the National Labor Relations Board present to facilitate a secret ballot.

ICYMI: BuzzFeed’s First Round of Layoffs Puts an End to Its National News Desk

NAJA launches Indigenous Investigative Collective

The Native American Journalists Association (NAJA) has launched the Indigenous Investigative Collective (IIC) in an effort to provide training, resources, and networked support to Indigenous reporters who cover the day-to-day activities of their tribal governments. The article reports that this is a historic step to support investigative journalism in Indigenous communities and the IIC will support transparency and responsibility within these communities by securely handling sensitive documents, data, and news tips. “NAJA believes that to safeguard tribal sovereignty and self-determination, tribal citizens must have access to information about their governments as well as their associated institutions and enterprises,” the article reports. In order to become a member of the IIC, news organizations will have to adopt a set of baseline security standards, training, and protocols developed by NAJA.

Read more about the IIC here.

TechCrunch unveils a subscription product, Extra Crunch

TechCruch has launched its new subscription service — Extra Crunch — that costs $15 per month. Subscribers will not only get exclusive content, but also will receive features such as Rapid Read mode which allows users to digest more of TechCrunch’s report more quickly. Members will receive offline perks as well, including access to a community of founders and vertical experts; members-only benefits at TechCrunch events; and invitations to weekly conference calls. Although a specific number of subscribers the publisher is trying to target in its first year was not disclosed, TechCrunch editor in chief Matthew Panzarino told Digiday, “We feel that there are very few publications out there that are as well-poised as we are to build that direct relationship.”

Are subscription services becoming the new thing? ‘A business of marginal gains’: How The Telegraph pairs user registration and paid subscriptions

LinkedIn debuts LinkedIn Live, a new live video broadcast service

Alongside original written work, LinkedIn has reported that video is the fastest-growing format on its platform. Because of its exponential growth, the company is launching live video — giving people and organizations the ability to broadcast real-time video. The beta launching will be in the U.S. and will be invite-only. LinkedIn will then, in the coming weeks, post a contact form for others who want to get in on the action. The goal of LinkedIn Live is to broadcast subject matter — such as conferences, product announcements, Q&A’s, and other events — that one might already see on LinkedIn’s news feed.

Related: More Collaboration Is Coming to LinkedIn Sales Navigator

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Joanna Giannell is a Senior Customer Content Specialist with PR Newswire. She is also an animal lover and music enthusiast. Tune into her insights as a social curator at @PRNpets.

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