Facebook to hire journalists to curate news despite previous failed efforts

Anthony Cuthbertson

Facebook is hiring a small team of experienced journalists to curate a selection of daily news stories for its users.

A new feature called News Tab will roll out on the social media giant's mobile app and will be distinct from its main feed.

Although many of the stories featured will be selected by algorithms, the top stories will be chosen by a team of less than 10 editors.

"Our goal with the News Tab is to provide a personalised, highly relevant experience for people," Campbell Brown, Facebook's head of news partnerships, told The New York Times. "To start, the Top News section of the tab we're pulling together a small team of journalists to ensure we're highlighting the right stories."

It is not the first time Facebook has hired journalists to curate news on its platform, which has struggled in recent years to cope with the spread of misinformation.

In 2016, Russian operatives targeted Facebook users with false news stores in an effort to influence both the US Presidential elections and the UK referendum for independence from the European Union.

Last year, the technology giant was forced to shut down its Trending Topics section following allegations that workers were required to suppress conservative news and negative stories about Facebook.

The company will start testing the News Tab feature in October, however it will only be available for a portion of its US users.

Jobs for the new initiative are expected to be posted on Facebook's online job board, with at least one of the roles likely to be based in the UK.