With all the American political turmoil it is obvious that news making companies need to change the way they transmit news. Realising that Trump got real, CNN, CBSN, ABC News and some other broadcasting corporations have turned to their last resort to show the real face of political mishmash – Facebook live videos. When the major events demanding audiences’ choice (like Presidential elections) go live, can it significantly influence the outcome? The answer is yes, and we are going to give you the reasons why. But firstly let’s quickly go through the boring part of live streaming feature and stuff.


What the hell is Facebook live?

To start the ball rolling, one needs to clarify what does going live mean, and how you can do it. We already had a word about Facebook live videos some time ago but the topic is not closed yet. For a little bit of clarification also read our post on how CNN adopts new technologies. To sum up, you can see that news is becoming mobile. No time for TV adaptation or cuttings is wasted and you get an authentic version of events immediately when they are happening somewhere in the Universe. Well, if you check your Facebook feed every minute, of course. And the major broadcasting corporations indeed are positive that you do it.


Why is it so important to show the elections then?

In the research published here we can see that 36 of 100 of the most discussed posts on Facebook last year were opinion pieces. At the same time, Facebook live videos have also recommended themselves as a proven way to boost engagement with news. Thus, people want to have their say. And they will when the destiny of the nation is at stake. You can see the successful combo of showing people news through the subjective gaze of a camera guy.

Logically flowing from the previous point, live videos raise awareness. Mainstream way of news broadcast may be biased. People may unintentionally distort facts or narrow down the news to fit in the program schedule or words count. When going live, you are telling the truth. And thus, you attract audience to anything you want to tell, be it major events or local news that are probably never going to get resonance being told an old-fashion way. Even the dumbest content may get 35 000 views. Show something globally significant and you’ll attract millions. And as a bonus news corporations don’t really need to do anything with the content as it builds itself live. They just go around and listen (or watch). The audience will make conclusions themselves.




The Times, for example, gathered some crazy amount of likes and comments just being there to live stream the interview with Orlando shooting survivor. Doing the same with elections and streaming not only the main events, but spontaneous interviews with people on spot is going to give the audience fuller picture of the election. As a result, presumingly, they will vote consciously. That’s why CBSN wants about 80 people to document both conventions from different angles, and Huffington Post sends 5 people to go around the conventions to show people something else apart of the pretentious speeches. Huffington Post, to be fair does a great job for itself, as behind the scenes views bring your content to the whole new level of audience-broadcaster closeness, and we believe it.


The prospects and limitations

Live news, however, clearly won’t replace any other type, but will become a good way to enrich content diversity. It is still only a supplement to whatever news corporations are creating in their studios. The resent Reuters Institute report shows that watching news on social media is not for everyone. Some audiences still prefer engage with the news website or simply watch news on TV. Thus, news corporations aren’t putting way too much on it, and don’t expect engaging and educating every single one. It is going to be a complex work, and yes, being thoughtfully integrated, live streaming will make them better heard.



To sum up, elections seem quite suitable to test both the service and the audience. Although, going live does not equal to bringing reason to people, it is still a great way to engage the voters in the discussion. Conveniently, the new Facebook feature enables the longer streaming time to cover the entire event.

Subscribe to WM Daily. Be In Touch With Rebellious Voices