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Facebook: Full Speed Ahead For Live Video

Facebook’s foray into live video has been short of seamless. Users are increasingly broadcasting violent and obscene events, public figures aren’t embracing the medium as quickly as expected, and marketers are certainly not yet sold on the idea.    

Moving full speed ahead, however, the social giant is readying the global rollout of live video on Instagram Stories.  

“From real-time makeup tutorials to live DJ sets, it’s been exciting to watch as the community shares new sides of their lives,” the company said in a cheerfully optimistic statement, on Wednesday.

Of course, the announcement makes no mention of teens streaming their own suicides; the young woman whose rape was just broadcast on Facebook Live; or the young man with special needs who was recently tortured, live for Facebook’s entire community to see.

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Perhaps a result of these problems, Facebook has recently been de-emphasizing live video in its ongoing discussions with partner publishers.

“Instead, Facebook is pushing publishers to create longer, premium video content as part of a larger effort led by Facebook exec Ricky Van Veen,” Recode recently reported. “The hope is to get more high-quality video onto the platform and into your News Feed -- the kind of stuff, presumably, you might find on Netflix.”

Yet, on Instagram or its flagship platform, Facebook certainly isn’t giving up on video.

Exploring new monetization opportunity, the company is reportedly readying a mid-roll ad format, which will give brands the opportunity to reach video viewers, midstream.  

For publishers providing the content, Facebook is expected to give them 55% of the mid-roll ad revenue -- the same share presently offered by Google’s YouTube unit.

More broadly, the social giant continues to push forward with its video ambitions.

As Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said on a recent earnings call: “We’re putting video first."

It’s no secret what Zuckerberg sees in video. Worldwide, revenue from mobile video will reach $25 billion by 2021, according to recent research.

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