To promote local news programs, partnerships and other initiatives Facebook will invest 300 million over the next three years. The push to support local news comes as Facebook tries to shake off its reputation as a hotbed for misinformation and elections-meddling. The company says users have been asking to see more local content that is relevant to them, including news stories as well as community information such as road closings during a snowstorm.
The money will go towards reporting grants for local newsrooms, expanding Facebook’s program to help local newsrooms with subscription business models and investing in nonprofits aimed at supporting local news. The 300 million investment includes a 5 million grant to the nonprofit Pulitzer Center to launch “Bringing Stories Home,” a fund that will provide local U.S. newsrooms with reporting grants to support coverage of local issues. There’s also a 2 million investment in Report for America as part of a partnership aiming to place 1,000 journalists in local newsrooms across the country over the next five years.
Campbell Brown, Facebook’s head of global news partnerships said, “None of us have quite figured out ultimately what the future of journalism is going to look like but we want to be part of helping find a solution.”