8 min

Facebook and its media operation

Is this more media whining, since it's an industry that whines a lot, or does this article actually have merit?

Only media people will think much about this. The Facebook masses won't care.


http://gizmodo.com/want-to-know-what-facebook-really-thinks-of-journalists-1773916117

http://mediagazer.com/160503/p13#a160503p13

John Gruber / Daring Fireball: Inside Facebook's ‘Trending News’ Team
Lindsey Ellefson / Mediaite: The Journalists Behind Facebook's Trending News: ‘We Were Treated in This Robot Way’
John Herrman / @jwherrman: this passage will follow facebook around for a long, long time http://gizmodo.com/... pic.twitter.com/1wThAnuKRx
Brian Feldman / New York Magazine: The Secret Behind Facebook's Trending Topics Bar
Rose Pastore / Fast Company: Former Facebook contractors describe “grueling,” “humiliating” work conditions
Zeynep Tufekci / @zeynep: About that Gizmodo story and Facebook's curators. The core is this: Facebook is a social space and a gatekeeper—and that space is for sale.
Zeynep Tufekci / @zeynep: On Facebook choosing between sources. There is no neutral method here. They do & will have to make choices. Algo/bot/human mix— but choices.
Jeff Sneider / @theinsneider: Gizmodo exposes the dirty little secret behind Facebook's Trending Topics. Variety benefited http://gizmodo.com/... http://twitter.com/...
Peter Kafka / Re/code: TFW you realize the robot you trained is going to take your job
Mathew Ingram / @mathewi: Bots are more reliable and never complain about working long hours http://twitter.com/...
Mike Cernovich / @cernovich: Mainstream “journalists” are literally basement dwelling losers. via @Nero http://gizmodo.com/... http://twitter.com/...
Ninja Economics / @ninjaeconomics: So, avoid news outlets that appeal to blacks or conservatives. “Curation” is just for white liberals then. Got it. http://twitter.com/...
Rafat Ali / @rafat: Surprise, scale-game working environments are shitty. http://twitter.com/...
@derektmead: yeah def read this http://gizmodo.com/...
Joe Hanson / @jtotheizzoe: This story on Facebook's “trending news” tool makes me feel not-so-comfortable http://gizmodo.com/... http://twitter.com/...
Will Federman / @wfederman: This is what happened when Facebook hired journalists to curate news trends: “We were truly slaves to the algorithm” http://gizmodo.com/...
Betsy Rothstein / The Daily Caller: Facebook ‘News Curators’ Show Bias Towards ‘Preferred Media Outlets’
Timothy B. Lee / @binarybits: I feel like this article never explains what's “degrading as a human being” about a job writing 20 headlines a day. http://gizmodo.com/...
@kifleswing: When I worked curating Facebook Paper's tech section (remember that?) they told me to just rip off Techmeme http://gizmodo.com/...
Iain Manley / @iainmanley: The journalist curators that decide what is “trending” on Facebook, while teaching software how to replace them: http://gizmodo.com/...
Josh Quittner / @twittner: I'm having this tattooed on my face: “We were truly slaves to the algorithm.” http://gizmodo.com/...
Steven Perlberg / @perlberg: so it looks like Facebook treats its news contractors.... sort of like digital media companies have http://gizmodo.com/...
Mat Honan / @mat: “as the algorithm got better, there was a sense that at some point the humans would be replaced” http://gizmodo.com/...
Laura Hazard Owen / @laurahazardowen: I am not horrified by this unless FB totally misled these ppl about what the nature of their work would be. http://gizmodo.com/...
Justin Miller / @justinjm1: .@Gizmodo blows the doors off media's most feared company: Facebook http://gizmodo.com/... http://twitter.com/...
Carl Franzen / @carlfranzen: How your Facebook Trending News sausage is made via @MichaelFNunez http://gizmodo.com/... http://twitter.com/...
The Federalist: Surprise! Facebook Blacklists Trending Topics And Conservative News Outlets
Joshua Benton / @jbenton: I'm wondering what these people expected: that they'd be opening up Facebook's Cairo bureau or something? http://gizmodo.com/...
Mikael Thalen / @mikaelthalen: Contractors tell @Gizmodo that all trending news stories on Facebook are hand-picked http://gizmodo.com/... http://twitter.com/...
Nellie Bowles / @nelliebowles: Gizmodo under @katiedrumm is so so so good http://twitter.com/...
John Cook / @johnjcook: when will your judgment and experience be harvested for the algorithm? http://gizmodo.com/...
Paul Joseph Watson / @prisonplanet: Facebook ‘blacklists’ trending news topics it doesn't like on a “daily basis” and relegates conservative sites. http://gizmodo.com/...
Libby Watson / @libbycwatson: “We had to write in the most passive tense possible,” which explains headlines “in an alien-esque, passive language” http://gizmodo.com/...
@chanders: Not bots that act like humans but humans that act like bots. http://twitter.com/...
@chillmage: Facebook has a higher opinion of bots than journalists http://gizmodo.com/...
Andrea Castillo / @anjiecast: Former Facebook curators: company can and does blacklist stories it doesn't like from trending status http://gizmodo.com/...
Katie Drummond / @katiedrumm: This is god's work from @MichaelFNunez and I am very glad we're doing ithttp://gizmodo.com/want-to-know- what-facebook-really-thinks-of- journalists-1773916117 ...
Tomio Geron / @tomiogeron: “We choose what's trending,” “There was no real standard for measuring what qualified as news and what didn't.” http://bit.ly/1rtuH2B
Rob Marvin / @rjmarvin1: This @Gizmodo story makes me both sad and scared for Facebook-driven web journalismhttp://gizmodo.com/want-to- know-what-facebook-really-thinks-of- journalists-1773916117 ...
Carl Franzen / @carlfranzen: “many former employees suspect that Facebook's eventual goal is to replace its human curators with a robotic one.” http://bit.ly/1riU5aZ
Erik Malinowski / @erikmal: facebook literally had bloggers working out of its basementhttp://gizmodo.com/want-to- know-what-facebook-really-thinks-of- journalists-1773916117 ...
Stefan Constantine / @whatthebit: lololololol facebook hates journalistshttp://gizmodo.com/want-to- know-what-facebook-really-thinks-of- journalists-1773916117 ...
Kim Fox / @kimfox: Want to Know What Facebook Really Thinks of Journalists? Here's What Happened When It Hired Some.: http://gizmodo.com/...
Andrew Beaujon / @abeaujon: Facebook news curators say they had “the power to ‘deactivate’ (or blacklist) a trending topic” http://bit.ly/1pYpGh8
Anthony Quintano / @anthonyquintano: Facebook's “Trending” is exactly everything we feared it was http://gizmodo.com/... pic.twitter.com/Dr4N3PtFPm
Kerry Flynn / @kerrymflynn: Another one for day's damning stories about Facebook. Disrespect for journalism in curators team http://gizmodo.com/... by @MichaelFNunez
Joseph Lichterman / @ylichterman: “They have it down to a science,” said one former curator. “We were truly slaves to the algorithm.” http://gizmodo.com/... ?
Patrick Lucas Austin / @patbits: This is the best article about Facebook I've read all year: http://gizmodo.com/...
Justin Miller / @justinjm1: EXPOSED: Facebook uses young journalism contractors to pick what's “trending” http://gizmodo.com/...
David Weiner / @daweiner: If people think that whatever's popular will always win out on Facebook, then they're deluding themselves.pic.twitter.com/W2HC2mX4qj
Mathew Ingram / @mathewi: Story says Facebook curators were specifically told not to refer to Twitter and just say “social media” http://gizmodo.com/...
Erin Griffith / @eringriffith: “They were also discouraged from mentioning Twitter by name in headlines and summaries.” http://gizmodo.com/...


http://daringfireball.net/linked/2016/05/03/facebook-trending-news

http://nymag.com/selectall/2016/05/the-secret-behind-facebook-s-trending-topics-bar.html

https://twitter.com/jwherrman/status/727565462104592385


From the Gizmodo story:

An estimated 600 million people see a news story on Facebook every week, and the social network’s founder Mark Zuckerberg has been transparent about his goal to monopolize digital news distribution. “When news is as fast as everything else on Facebook, people will naturally read a lot more news,” he said in a Q&A last year, adding that he wants Facebook Instant Articles to be the “primary news experience people have.”

And the full experience of Instant Articles only occurs within the Facebook native app on phones. IA does not work within the tablet native app nor in a web browser on any device. Outside of the phone app, only a link appears that takes users to the publishers' websites. This is not the experience that Zuckerberg wants, but it doesn't matter, since most Facebook users access the site by using the native app on their phones.

According to five former members of Facebook’s trending news team—“news curators” as they’re known internally—Zuckerberg & Co. take a downright dim view of the industry and its talent. In interviews with Gizmodo, these former curators described grueling work conditions, humiliating treatment, and a secretive, imperious culture in which they were treated as disposable outsiders. After doing a tour in Facebook’s news trenches, almost all of them came to believe that they were there not to work, but to serve as training modules for Facebook’s algorithm.

The dozen or so journalists paid to run that section are contractors who work out of the basement of the company’s New York office.

The trending news section is run by people in their 20s and early 30s, most of whom graduated from Ivy League and private East Coast schools like Columbia University and NYU.

That sounds real diverse.

Over time, the work became increasingly demanding, and Facebook’s trending news team started to look more and more like the worst stereotypes of a digital media content farm. Managers gave curators aggressive quotas for how many summaries and headlines to write, and timed how long it took curators to write a post. The general standard was 20 posts a day.

Burnout was rampant. “Most of the original team isn’t there anymore,” said another former news curator. “It was a stop-gap for them. Most of the people were straight out of [journalism school]. At least one of them was fired. Most of them quit or were hired by other news outlets.”

Maybe working as a Facebook curator looked good to other media orgs.

“We had to write in the most passive tense possible. That’s why you’d see headlines that appear in an alien-esque, passive language.”

From a group of about 20, Facebook has fired at least eight people this year, and according to former curators, the company has yet to replace any of them. “They had hired us and promised us a job for at least a year,” said one. “Within three months, six of us were fired. No reason was given. We were just told ‘the company is cutting back.’”

#media #socialmedia #business #moronism

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