As if it wasn’t enough for Facebook and Instagram to blatantly copy Snapchat with many of it’s latest features, it’s happening again. Facebook is allegedly working on a feature to showcase curated content from publishers on News Feed.
According to Business Insider, the new feature is called Collections, and it
[quote]functions similarly to Snapchat’s Discover section, which showcases news stories, listicles, videos and other content submitted by handpicked media partners.[/quote]
It’s not clear when Facebook will launch Collections, but since it’s still unannounced or officially confirmed (the company declined to comment), we can only assume that it may, or may not, see the light of day. In the past, Facebook has often tested features but never actually launched them; yet, when it comes to pilfering features from Snapchat, the company has been pretty good at that.
What we do know however, is that Facebook has “approached media and entertainment companies in recent weeks to create content for Collections.” So, how would Collections make a difference to Facebook? Well, as Alex Heath’s Business Insider article mentions, it’s becoming more and more difficult to
[quote]distinguish between high-quality content from established media outlets and the glut of low-quality, fake news stories that go viral across the social network.[/quote]
One of the ways in which Facebook can fix this problem, is by allowing curated content from specific publishers in Collections. Also, after opening up Instant Articles to all, Facebook loosened its ties to publishers. Collections may be a way to keep them closer. With over 150 million users, Snapchat’s Discover is proof that this model works very well.
Collections also apparently allows publishers to have “direct and potentially much broader access to the social network’s vast audience of 1.8 billion users,” but that doesn’t negate Facebook’s problematic history with curated content. Earlier this year, a breaking news app, Facebook Notify, was shut down; also, Facebook’s trending section has been heavily criticised recently.
Image credit: Mashable