Watch out, publishers: a nightmare scenario for Facebook may soon be a reality.
The social network last week officially launched its secondary news feed called Explore. The feed generally features posts from Facebook Pages users don't follow. News Feed, meanwhile, hosts posts from friends and Pages users do follow.
But that's not true for everyone. In six markets, Facebook has removed posts from Pages in the original News Feed and relegated them to another feed, Filip Struhárik, editor and social media manager at Denník N, wrote. That means Facebook's main feed is no longer a free playing field for publishers. Instead, it's a battlefield of "pay to play," where publishers have to pony up the dough to get back into the News Feed.
YouTube has been going through something similar. It's called the 'Adpocalypse'. If you are don't meet the unpublished standards of the AI and secret set of reviewers you at best loses all revenue on your video and at worst getting your channel turned off. YouTube is doing this because their advertiser where showing up an extremely small number of controversial video that they went draconian on their rules. The reason that is YouTube has never been profitable and Alphabet is thinking about dumping YouTube.
Guess what? Facebook hasn't really been profitable since the 'Appocalypse' came along. At Facebook's height 90% of their revenue was coming from Zynga games. Do you remember Farm Heros? Then tablet and phone games came along and became more accessible. Try playing a speed round of Candy Crush on with a mouse in your PC. It don't work so well.
Zynga took too long to adapt their games. Eventual most of their game were killed off by better clones. Facebook has rebounded some through diversification. But the company is feeling pressure from other social media platforms. Add the negative press from the last election cycle and they're trying to take back control with a 'pay to play' scheme. The thought is 'If they have to deal with fake news then the fake news sources will have to pay.'
This will backfire quickly. The second AJ News Service, who pays to be on Facebook, gets censored a class action lawsuit is going come out in full force.