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Facebook Announces $100 Mln Funding To Help News Organizations

facebook jan21 30mar20 lt

Facebook (FB) Monday announced plans to invest $100 million in the news industry to help the news companies during the time of coronavirus pandemic.

The tech giant said it will offer $25 million in emergency grant funding for local news outlets through its Facebook Journalism Project. The remaining $75 million will go to publishers globally through Facebook ad spending.

The move comes as advertisers cut back on spending during the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak. Advertising is a critical revenue stream for news media in the U.S.

"The news industry is working under extraordinary conditions to keep people informed during the COVID-19 pandemic," Facebook said in a statement. "At a time when journalism is needed more than ever, ad revenues are declining due to the economic impact of the virus."

Accurate reporting about the disease is also critical during this period as many myths and misinformation about the virus are being spread online.

"If people needed more proof that local journalism is a vital public service, they're getting it now," Facebook said in a statement.

Facebook will focus its grants on the publishers that need them the most in the hardest hit countries in the world. The company would be giving $5,000 to 50 local newsrooms across the US and Canada to cover "unexpected costs" associated with covering the viral outbreak.

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