At a loss of what to do with your free time? Want to find out about the major events happening in your city? Logging on to Facebook could be the solution.
The social network has tapped a team of curators to compile a “featured events” list that can help you discover what to do in the real world. The new tool goes beyond Facebook’s existing, algorithm-powered suggested events feed, and sees the platform acting as tastemaker with the help of its new employees.
Exactly where Facebook hired its talent from has not been disclosed. Despite the company’s COO Sheryl Sandberg recently recently remarking that it is not in the business of fostering journalists, the editorial-style feature is reminiscent of the type of local recommendations you’d find in a newspaper or lifestyle magazine, than a social network. Therefore, it wouldn’t come as a surprise if the “featured events” list is being curated by individuals with experience in the media industry. After all, Facebook is no stranger to hiring media personnel — as was evidenced in its recent trending topics controversy, which saw its personnel allege that certain employees were suppressing conservative news on the platform.
In order to avoid any further accusations of bias, Facebook claims that the new tool “will not include events primarily focused on politics or worship,” Recode reports. Additionally, it states that the list will not feature recommendations from Facebook advertisers.
The Facebook “featured events” tool is rolling out to ten of the biggest U.S. cities starting today, including Boston, Chicago, Dallas, Houston, Los Angeles, Miami, New York City, San Francisco, Seattle and Washington, D.C.
Facebook says that 550 million people currently use its existing events feature, meaning it already has an in-built audience that could potentially utilize the new list. The social network will be hoping that if you decide to take its recommendation, you’ll repay the favor and share a photo or two in your Facebook status.