Facebook Launches "Live" Video Streaming

Once again the celebrities of this world get it all. Case in point, Facebook's new "Live" video streaming feature launched last week is only available to those with fame, power, and a Verified page.

"VIPs can start a Live broadcast that’s posted to the News Feed, watch comments overlaid in real-time on their stream, and then make the recording permanently available for viewing. Stars like The Rock and Serena Williams will stream today.

As for when the average user might get broadcast abilities, Live product manager Vadim Lavrusik wouldn’t say, but told me “We think this will be an awesome experience for both public figures and also users. We want to get feedback from both public figures and viewers as we evolve the product.”

Why should celebrities use Facebook Live instead of Periscope or Meerkat? Lavrusik tells me “Public figures already have fans on Facebook that they share to every single day.” Essentially, reach. With huge fan counts on Facebook, celebrities could see a wider audience there than on other networks.

Another reason: videos don’t disappear. They’re immediately deleted on Meerkat and only live for 24 hours on Periscope (though you can save them to your camera roll). But Lavrusik tells me 53 percent of Facebook video views come from re-shares, which would probably happen after a broadcast ends.

Broadcasters can delete their videos if they want to keep them off-the-cuff and ephemeral, but otherwise the auto-published Live feed story will turn into a traditional video. That might make VIPs feel like recording Live streams is worth their time.

While Facebook has never been great at real-time content due to its filtered News Feed, it’s worked to make sure Live broadcasts reach viewers while they’re still in progress. Beyond appearing quickly in the feed to a celeb’s subscribers, Facebook will send push alerts to tune into the broadcast to users who’ve recently interacted with that Page. This should trigger big audiences without annoying people who Liked an actor or athlete years ago and don’t really care.

When a celebrity with Mentions starts a broadcast, a video with the Live tag goes out on the News Feed. There, viewers can watch and comment. But to avoid overwhelming the broadcaster, Facebook only pushes comments onto their screen at a steady, readable pace, and celebs can turn off seeing comments altogether. Vulgar comments will automatically be hidden, and broadcasters can add words to their Page’s moderation blacklist if there are topics they don’t want to talk about.

To keep Live shows friendly, Facebook will show if one of your friends starts watching, and broadcasters will see if another verified celebrity hops on. One thing lacking is a way to share a stream while it’s in progress.

When broadcasters end the stream, the News Feed story and video stay around but lose the Live tag. Viewers can rewatch the video indefinitely, but they’ll see comments as a traditional reel below the video rather than overlaid. That could make for a disjointed experience if broadcasters discuss the comments on the stream that aren’t shown in real-time on the recording."

Time to chalk up another win for Facebook! Great job on staying relevant, guys and gals.

Source: TechCrunch

Post by Allie Nute