ADVERTISING GIANT Facebook has announced 'Watch', a new TV platform that will feature original shows funded by the social network.
Facebook Watch is available now to a handful of users in the US and arrives as a revamped version of Facebook's Video tab, which it replaces. It'll serve up content on the firm's iOS, Android, desktop and TV apps, the company announced on Wednesday.
In the 'Watch' tab, users will find a number of sections such as "most talked about" videos, and "what's making people laugh". If that isn't enough to make you delete your Facebook account, each programme will also feature a comments section, so you can smack-talk other viewers during a show.
Daniel Danker, director of Product at Facebook, said: "We've learned from Facebook Live that people's comments and reactions to a video are often as much a part of the experience as the video itself.
"So when you watch a show, you can see comments and connect with friends and other viewers while watching, or participate in a dedicated Facebook Group for the show."
Users will also be able to follow shows, much like they follow Facebook pages, to receive notifications when new episodes come out
It's unlikely Netflix is quaking in its boots, as Facebook has announced that its first original shows will include: 'Daily Nas', where rapper Nas interacts with fans; 'Tastemade's Kitchen Little', a show about kids who watch a how-to video of a recipe then instruct professional chefs on how to make it; and 'Returning the Favor', in which Mike Rowe (???) rewards people who've helped their communities.
Facebook has said that it will also broadcast one Major League Baseball game every week. Twitter previously live streamed Thursday night NFL games, but, recently lost those rights to Amazon.
Facebook is limiting its Watch content creators to a small set of publishers to begin with, perhaps unsurprisingly given its programming lineup, but said it plans to open it up and allow others to make shows.
If producers choose to, they can insert advertisements in their videos to earn money from them. TechCrunch says that Facebook will keep 45 per cent of ad money, while the rest will go to the video maker.
Facebook has yet to say when Watch will be available to all, but to be honest, we're not too fussed. µ
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