By placing news and videos from other websites directly on Facebook, the social network’s “Instant Articles” feature would speed up the often frustrating experience of trying to click to an article from the Facebook feed. In return for their content, participating publishers would be offered a share of the advertising revenue.
The Wall Street Journal reports that the social network is offering to let publishers keep revenue from ads sold through these Instant Articles, though deals are still being finalized. Some publishers are reportedly “wary of tethering themselves more tightly to Facebook,” and it remains unclear what control a publisher would have over the Instant Articles experience.
The move is aimed at improving the user experience on Facebook. Today, clicking on a news story on Facebook directs you to the news publication’s website, adding additional time as the page loads and –more importantly for Facebook — taking you away from the social network. With Instant Articles all the content would load more or less instantaneously, keeping users engaged on Facebook’s site.
Earlier this week, Facebook began testing a new feature that would let users prioritize updates from particular friends. That feature, paired alongside something like Instant Articles, could go a long way to helping people find things worth lingering on Facebook for.