After Australia row, Facebook signs up partners for German news product

Facebook News has launched in the United States and Britain, and will follow soon in France, said Jesper Doub, Facebook’s director of news partnerships in Europe. — Reuters pic
Facebook News has launched in the United States and Britain, and will follow soon in France, said Jesper Doub, Facebook’s director of news partnerships in Europe. — Reuters pic

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LONDON, March 1 — Facebook said today it had signed up a string of German media partners to provide content for a local news product, in a success for the US social network following a row over payment for news content in Australia.

Described as a “dedicated venue for journalistic content”, Facebook News will feature reporting from heavyweight news weeklies Die Zeit and Der Spiegel, and newspapers including the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, Handelsblatt and Tagesspiegel.

“Part of our user base wants to read more news,” Jesper Doub, Facebook’s director of news partnerships in Europe, told reporters.

Facebook News has launched in the United States and Britain, and will follow soon in France, added Doub.

He did not disclose financial terms for the partnerships backing the German launch of Facebook News, which will also feature several regional newspaper partners as well as fashion, motoring and sports publishers.

“We are delighted to try out new ways to reach our readers with quality journalism in close partnership with platforms like Facebook,” Spiegel Group Managing Director Stefan Ottlitz said in a statement.

Facebook said last week it would invest US$1 billion (RM4 billion) in news over the next three years, days after ending a week-long standoff with Australia over a law requiring tech giants to pay traditional media companies to publish content. — Reuters

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