Facebook rolls out video service worldwide

Facebook launched Watch amid a shift in video viewing habits away from traditional television to online platforms including Netflix and Hulu.(Shutterstock)
Updated 29 August 2018
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Facebook rolls out video service worldwide

  • Facebook has been ramping up its video offerings with original shows
  • Facebook is hoping that videos made by users themselves are what will keep people watching

PARIS: Facebook said Wednesday it is rolling out globally its Watch video service, which has already been available in the United States for more than a year.
“We designed the product not just in a mindless consumption but in order to get people engaged,” said Fidji Simo, Facebook’s vice president for video.
Facebook launched Watch amid a shift in video viewing habits away from traditional television to online platforms including Netflix and Hulu, and with more people watching both professional and user content on services like YouTube.
Facebook has been ramping up its video offerings with original shows and this week announced new formats including interactive game shows, quizzes and polls.
The announcement comes two weeks after Facebook revealed it would broadcast for free Spanish top flight division football matches in the Indian subcontinent, and Champions League matches in Latin America.
“Contents that we fund are a very small part of the contents available on Watch,” said Simo.
Facebook is hoping instead that videos made by users themselves are what will keep people watching.
Simo said Facebook had spent a lot of time developing tools so creators of videos can integrate ads themselves.
“We remain confident that monetization will help creation,” she said.


Facebook accused of discrimination with job ad targeting

Updated 19 September 2018
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Facebook accused of discrimination with job ad targeting

  • It charges that job ads on Facebook targeted male users only
  • Facebook lets advertisers target ads on the basis of gender and age, which is against the law in America

WASHINGTON: A complaint has been filed with the US government accusing Facebook and 10 other companies of using the platform’s job ad targeting system to discriminate on the basis of gender.
The complaint was announced Tuesday by the American Civil Liberties Union, a union called the Communications Workers of America and a labor law firm, on behalf of three female job seekers and a group of “thousands” of members represented by the union.
It charges that job ads on Facebook targeted male users only. It also alleges that most of the listings were for jobs in male-dominated fields, so women and non-binary users were excluded from seeing these ads.
Facebook lets advertisers target ads on the basis of gender and age, which is against the law in America, the complaint reads.
“I shouldn’t be shut out of the chance to hear about a job opportunity just because I am a woman,” said Bobbi Spees, one of the three women named in the complaint.
Facebook spokesman Joe Osborne said in a statement to CNNMoney that there is no place for discrimination on Facebook.
“It’s strictly prohibited in our policies, and over the past year we’ve strengthened our systems to further protect against misuse,” Osborne said.
Facebook will defend itself once it has reviewed the complaint, he added.
The ACLU noted that online platforms such as Facebook are generally not liable for content published by others.
“But in this case, Facebook is doing much more than merely publishing content created by others,” the advocacy group argued.
“It has built the architecture for this discriminatory marketing framework, enabled and encouraged advertisers to use it, and delivered the gender-based ads according to employers’ sex-based preferences.”
Last month the US Department of Housing and Urban Development accused Facebook of breaking the law by letting landlords and home sellers use its ad-targeting system to discriminate against potential buyers or tenants.
Facebook responded by cutting more than 5,000 ad-targeting options to prevent advertisers from discriminating on the basis of traits such as religion or race.