Facebook splashes $50 million on Live streaming deals with celebs and media

Facebook Live
Facebook is signing up celebrities and media publishers for its Live video feature with multimillion-dollar deals.

It was no secret that the social network was offering financial incentives to its media partners, including BuzzFeed, Vox, and Gawker Media, among others, but the extent of those deals was kept under wraps, until now.

Facebook has spent over $50 million on contracts with approximately 140 media companies and celebrities, reports The Wall Street Journal. The digital publishers include prominent news outlets such as The New York Times, and CNN, celebs including Gordon Ramsey, Kevin Hart, Deepak Chopra, and NFL quarterback Russell Wilson, and the aforementioned media sites.

Individual contracts valued at over $1 million have been offered to 17 companies, with specific rates based a publisher’s experience with the video format, and engagement rates. Therefore, it comes as no surprise that the highest paid media partner is BuzzFeed, which is set to receive $3.05 million for a year’s worth of live broadcasts. The viral news publisher already boasts its own video app, and has over 7 million likes for its Facebook page — all of those users get notified every time it goes live on the platform. The New York Times received a similar figure of $3.03 million, and CNN’s partnership is reportedly worth $2.5 million.

Additional Live partners include the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and American Museum of Natural History in New York; dance music DJs Armin Van Buuren and Hardwell; and Spanish soccer behemoth FC Barcelona. Notably, Facebook has also nabbed several Vine creators, including Logan Paul, Andrew Bachelor (aka King Bach, and Lele Pons. Twitter’s ailing video looping service is allegedly hemorrhaging talent, and now we know where its stars are heading.

Judging by the numbers, and companies involved, Facebook is evidently building a live-streaming network with a diverse range of content that is more akin to YouTube than its closest competitor, Twitter’s live-streaming app, Periscope.

The social network claims that it doled out the lucrative contracts in order to set up its Facebook Live feature, and that it is working on implementing a concrete ad revenue-sharing policy.

Whilst Facebook is intent on pinning its hopes on third-party creators, its general users are also taking advantage of its live-streaming functionality. Last month, Facebook Live produced its first viral celebrity in the form of Candace Payne (better known as the Chewbacca Mom). Payne may not have been offered a million-dollar partnership to begin with, but that didn’t stop her from creating the most-watched Live video of all time, 157 million views and counting.

It just goes to show that, like YouTube, Facebook Live’s biggest asset may turn out to be its homegrown creators. After all, it is home to 1.65 billion users, many of whom could end up forming a sizable talent pool for the social network. The quicker it pins down that revenue-sharing plan, the more likely it is to both draw and retain the next generation of web stars.

Movies & TV

11 great sci-fi books to read before they become TV shows

You can get ahead of the next crop of science-fiction television series by picking up the books that inspired them. We've compiled a list of books you can add to your reading list now to get a glimpse of the future.
Movies & TV

The best movies streaming on Hulu right now (July 2019)

From dramas to blockbusters, Hulu offers some great films to its subscribers. Check out the best movies on Hulu, whether you're into charming adventure tales or gruesome horror stories.
Gaming

Fortnite views on Twitch fall, Apex Legends misses top 10 games played

Fortnite continues to reign as the top game being played on Twitch but non-gaming content continues to rise. Stream Elements' livestreaming report also showed that the top streamer crown continues to elude Ninja.
Music

The best free music download sites that are totally legal

Finding music that is both free and legal to download can be difficult. We've hand-picked a selection of the best free music download sites for you to legally download your next favorite album.
News

President Trump is no longer allowed to block people on Twitter, court rules

President Donald Trump cannot block critics from viewing his Twitter feed, a federal appeals court ruled. The court said that Trump violated the First Amendment by blocking people who were critical of him and his policies and that his…
News

Twitter finally banned hate speech against religious groups. Will it help?

Twitter will expand its rules to ban hateful conduct made against religious groups. The new rules will require the company to remove any tweet which “dehumanizes whole religious groups,” but it's not clear whether it will solve…
News

Facebook no longer lets you save your friends’ birthdays to your own calendar

Facebook quietly removed a feature that allowed users to export and sync their friends’ birthdays to an external calendar like iCal or Google Calendar. While you can still export upcoming events -- parties, get-togethers, and the like --…
Social Media

Looking to share some content? Here's how to repost on Instagram

Have you ever seen a cool picture on Instagram that you wanted to share? There's no official means of reposting content on Instagram, but there are a few workarounds. We break down the two most logical choices for getting the job done.
Mobile

Bitmoji lets you create personalized emojis to spice up your online chats

Looking for more interesting ways to use emoji when chatting? Bitmoji are personalized emoji that you design to look just like you -- and then create a whole keyboard of stickers that you can use with them. Here's what you should know.
Social Media

Your Twitter name can change with the times, just like you do — here's how

Despite what you may or may not have heard, Twitter names aren't actually set in stone. Check out our quick-hit guide on how to change your Twitter username and display name in less than five minutes.
News

Reddit is finally back online after an hours-long desktop outage

Reddit is back online for desktop users after an hours-long outage early Thursday morning. Reddit's status page said it was still investigating some residual issues, so users may still have some trouble accessing the site. 
Social Media

Here’s why Twitter went down for an hour earlier on Thursday

Twitter is finally back online after going down for users around the globe late Thursday morning. The hour-long disruption made Twitter the latest major social media network to go offline over the past month
Social Media

Facebook now allows you to opt out of those ads that target your tastes

Tired of seeing Facebook ads that aren’t relevant to you? Now you can not only opt out of ads from that company, but you can also see why the ad was shown to you in the first place.
How-To

Stop Facebook from tracking you and using targeted ads with these tips

Facebook and businesses that use the site track what pages you like, your political affiliation, and even try to guess your race. All of this is done so the site can target you with relevant ads. Here's how to opt out.