Instagram's Test Of Revenue Sharing Opens Door For Monetized Content

  • by June 30, 2021
Instagram is said to be testing a revenue-sharing arrangement with publishers that will give them a way to earn money for their video content. The Facebook-owned photo-sharing app contacted a small group of publishers about the pilot program for ads on its IGTV video hub, Axios reported.  

Group Nine Media, whose digital media brands include NowThis and PopSugar, and content studio Attn: were among the first content providers to be invited to participate in the test. Both companies have a large following on social-media apps like Instagram. Instagram since last year has weighed how to share revenue with publishers, aside from licensing arrangements for limited series, Axios reported in October.

The test of revenue-sharing comes as social-media companies take steps to incentivize the creation of content that keeps people coming back to their platforms. Publishers worldwide also have complained that digital advertising giants, such as Facebook and Google, don’t adequately compensate them for content, an issue that continues to be hotly debated. 
Amid the criticism and threats of stricter regulations, the companies have reached licensing agreements with many publishers to distribute their content in an aggregated form. Facebook has a news section in its app, while Google offers a “News Showcase.”  
Revenue-sharing programs have been around for years, in one form or another. Since 2007, Google’s YouTube has offered a way for individual video creators to receive a cut of ad revenue based on their viewership numbers. The monetization program helped to improve the quality of YouTube’s video content and lure more viewers to the platform. 
More recently, Facebook and Twitter have begun offering software tools to monetize content through subscriptions. Taking a cue from Substack, which lets content creators keep most of the revenue from subscriptions to email newsletters, Facebook and Twitter now have similar services for self-publishing.
Also, Microsoft's next version of Windows will have a tipping feature to give users a way to support their favorite publications in its news feed. Ideally, these revenue-sharing programs will help to improve the quality of digital content.



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