Facebook may pay publishers, Politico has new competition, and Liberty Mutual is in-housing


mark zuckerberg Mathias Döpfner


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News publishers got a boost this week when Mark Zuckerberg said Facebook might start paying for content and that it was working to create a separate news tab for publisher content. Publishers have been burned by Facebook a lot in the past and are understandably skeptical and there are a ton of unknowns about how a payment system would work. But for now, even Facebook’s biggest critics welcomed the news.

“We hope Mark’s words are followed by concrete steps towards actually creating a new business model that recognizes and compensates the work of quality journalism,” said Robert Thomson, CEO of News Corp and longtime agitator for better treatment by tech companies of the news business.

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FuboTV raised prices after ‘severely’ underpricing its service, and has a plan to dominate the digital TV industry
The sports-focused digital TV service recently increased its base price to $55 a month, making it the most expensive vMVPD. The whole industry has been operating at a loss to gain market share, but as an independent, Fubo has no other businesses to fall back on, as do Sling TV and DirecTV.

Liberty Mutual slashed its agency costs 30% by bringing 80% of its creative work in-house
As brands seek cost-effectiveness, transparency, and control over customer data, they have been taking marketing duties in-house, ranging from data insights and creative to media planning and buying. One, Liberty Mutual, says it has seen tangible benefits from doing so.

Politico is pumping $10 million into its subscription product as new tech startups muscle into the pricey DC market
Politico shook up the DC media landscape with its fast-twitch journalism that helped it build a pricey subscription business for Beltway insiders. But now it risks being disrupted by new tech startups with data-driven platforms, so Politico is pouring more than $10 million into its Pro subscription product.

Israeli web-design firm Wix.com has a little-known side business, and it’s heavily investing in it to take on influencer marketing
Wix.com may be best known for helping small businesses build their websites, but it also helps help big brands connect with their superfans though DeviantArt, an online community for artists and designers that it acquired two years ago. Brands including Blizzard Entertainment, Disney, Fiat, Ripley’s, and Universal have used the community.

Facebook is expanding its ad transparency efforts, but some advertisers worry it could hurt their ability to be competitive
Facebook is expanding its political and issue ads transparency repository, Ad Library, to encompass all live ads.
Facebook is adding the ability to search ads and users to see the spending and performance of political and issue advertisers for up to seven years. Some insiders think this added transparency could make it harder for certain categories of advertisers to compete. 

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