Facebook is introducing a new platform for video, called Watch, which will be available on mobile, desktop, laptop and in Facebook’s TV apps. It will provide a dedicated home for Facebook videos, allowing users to follow series and episodes from specific people and organisations.
Introducing the new service, Daniel Danker, director of product at Facebook, said: “Watch is personalised to help you discover new shows, organised around what your friends and communities are watching. For example, you’ll find sections like ‘Most Talked About,’ which highlights shows that spark conversation, ‘What’s Making People Laugh,’ which includes shows where many people have used the Haha reaction, and ‘What Friends Are Watching,’ which helps you connect with friends about shows they too are following.
“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.”
Facebook is pitching Watch as a platform for creators and publishers to “find an audience, build a community of passionate fans, and earn money for their work” and believes that a wide variety of Facebook shows can be successful on the platform, according to Danker.
“We think Watch will be home to a wide range of shows, from reality to comedy to live sports. To help inspire creators and seed the ecosystem, we’ve also funded some shows that are examples of community-oriented and episodic video series,” Danker said.
The service is initially being rolled out to a limited number of users in the US.