Skip to Content
Silicon Valley

Facebook is dead serious about getting you reading more local news

February 27, 2018

A new report says the social network is investing hard cash into city newspapers to help publishers get stories in front of more eyeballs.

The news:  Axios reports that the social network is launching a “$3 million, three-month pilot program” to coach “10-15 metro news organizations” and help them “build digital customer acquisitions on and off Facebook.” Ex-New York Times exec Tim Griggs is running the show.

Backstory: As part of its push to become "more meaningful," Facebook recently said it would prioritize local news in your feeds. Zuck says local news "helps us understand the issues that matter in our communities," and that reading it "is directly correlated with civic engagement."

Why it matters: Local news outlets struggle more than nationals to make money from ads, and it’s harder for them to generate revenue from subscriptions. This might help them find new ways to turn a buck. Facebook will also hope it boosts readership of high-quality local news, attenuating the effects of some of its more ... questionable content.

Deep Dive

Silicon Valley

Here’s how a Twitter engineer says it will break in the coming weeks

One insider says the company’s current staffing isn’t able to sustain the platform.

Twitter’s potential collapse could wipe out vast records of recent human history

What happens when the world’s knowledge is held in a quasi-public square owned by a private company that could soon go out of business?

Twitter may have lost more than a million users since Elon Musk took over

Estimates from Bot Sentinel suggest that more than 875,000 users deactivated their accounts between October 27 and November 1, while half a million more were suspended.

Former Twitter employees fear the platform might only last weeks

An ultimatum by Elon Musk demanding "extremely hardcore" working culture appears to have backfired. Insiders fear this could spell the end without drastic changes.

Stay connected

Illustration by Rose Wong

Get the latest updates from
MIT Technology Review

Discover special offers, top stories, upcoming events, and more.

Thank you for submitting your email!

Explore more newsletters

It looks like something went wrong.

We’re having trouble saving your preferences. Try refreshing this page and updating them one more time. If you continue to get this message, reach out to us at with a list of newsletters you’d like to receive.