Facebook tries to break the news with FB Newswire

The new tool will verify and surface news-related content on Facebook in real time

Facebook, looking to provide more valuable news information, is providing a new tool to that will post real-time content related to the day's news.

On Thursday the company announced the launch of FB Newswire -- a tool for journalists and newsrooms to find, share and embed newsworthy content from Facebook in the media they produce, Facebook said.

FB Newswire will be powered on the back end by Storyful, a company that monitors activity across the social Web and works with other news outlets to help them source stories. Storyful incorporates some form of verification into its technology. "Our global team of journalists source, date and geolocate everything, and add uploader contact details to every story," according to its website.

Storyfuls discovery technology and editorial team will verify and curate the best public posts from Facebook in real time, across a number of categories like news, entertainment, viral, sports, weather, lifestyle, and celebrity, Facebook said.

The feature is available to anyone, but its intended audience is journalists and newsrooms, Facebook said.

So ostensibly the stories that Facebook surfaces through its new tool won't just be regular posts from everyday users.

Still, FB Newswire will only be as useful as the content already posted on Facebook. The tool will aggregate content shared publicly on Facebook, which will include original photos, videos and status updates, the company said, "posted by people on the front lines of major events like protests, elections and sporting events."

With more than 1 billion monthly active users, Facebook is by far the world's largest social network, though it still lags behind Twitter as a source for real-time breaking news.

To become better in the area of news, Facebook recently introduced a trending feature that displays hotly discussed topics, and has also tweaked its news feed algorithm to more prominently display news articles from media outlets.

But even with FB Newswire, Facebook can't seem to escape Twitter's influence. In addition to its availability on Facebook at Facebook.com/FBNewswire, the tool can also be found on Twitter @FBNewswire.

Zach Miners covers social networking, search and general technology news for IDG News Service. Follow Zach on Twitter at @zachminers. Zach's e-mail address is zach_miners@idg.com

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Zach Miners

IDG News Service
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