Facebook launched a new website designed as a “one-stop shop” for journalists to learn how to get started using the social network’s products and how to improve their output.
The training website features online courses on 360-degree video and photos, Instant Articles, Facebook Live, and best practices for using Facebook and Instagram. The site will be updated throughout the week following its soft launch on 25 October.
“Next to Facebook guidelines and instructions, we're also taking great examples from the industry itself,” said Aine Kerr, manager of journalism partnerships at Facebook.
“Our hope is that this will be very informative for newsrooms but equally it will be very much a collaborative, inspiring experience for journalists to learn from how other journalists have been doing it in their newsrooms according to their particular beats and specialisms.”
As well as covering the basics of using the platform, such as the differences between profiles and pages, how to get verified, or privacy options, the training is built on three main pillars, which reflect the ways journalists use social media in newsrooms today.
The “discover”, “create” and “engage” learning tracks cover newsgathering and monitoring, turning content into stories, and audience engagement respectively.
The resources currently available take around 15 minutes to complete. To access them, journalists need to log into the Blueprint platform with their Facebook accounts.
Facebook will be expanding its training by introducing webinars and translating its existing courses into different languages in the coming months. The first webinar will take place on 3 November and will look at Facebook Live.
Journalists who would like to find out more about new products and tools from Facebook can also join the News, Media & Publishing on Facebook group, which currently has just under 8000 members.
The training available through the website has been developed after conversations between the Facebook News Partnership team and media organisations, and the team will continue to update the training based on feedback to reflect new product launches or skills needed.
The Facebook Live course, for example, covers the basics of getting started as well as the best formats for audience engagement, based on Facebook’s own research and insight from industry, Kerr told Journalism.co.uk.
“That's where you see that two-pronged effect of talking through guidelines, best practices, the how tos, but then very much best case examples coming from the industry and included into the website.”