The next time you spontaneously decide, “Screw it, we’ll do it live,” Facebook wants to make sure your friends actually see your footage.
The social network announced March 1 that it’s going to put live videos higher in users’ News Feeds as they’re actually occurring.
Video has quickly become a huge presence on Facebook, but this change should ensure that more time-sensitive videos get a boost over pre-recorded content.
The change signifies Facebook’s increasing interest in live event coverage. The company recently expanded the ability to stream live video to all iPhone and Android users. Other features, like trending topics and a new sports scores hub, help Facebook feel more current than it did in the past.
By betting big on live video, Facebook can expand its dominance in multiple directions. Live video is useful for covering news and entertainment events, as is common on the Twitter-owned Periscope, but it’s also a common way to stream video game playthroughs, as popularized on YouTube and Twitch. Facebook seems to see the most potential in helping celebrities leverage their brands and connect with their followers.
“‘Live’ is going to be an awesome thing for public figures . . . imagine your favorite public figure or politician having the power to broadcast from their pocket, go live, have an audience of thousands of people,” CEO Mark Zuckerberg said at a Q&A event last week. “I think you’re going to see a lot of that on Instagram and Facebook.”