Introducing Facebook Live to the UK - Social Songbird


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Introducing Facebook Live to the UK

Last week, Facebook Live saw its arrival in the UK at its London Headquarters, with the singer Jessie J chosen to give it a distinctly British feel for the first show. Facebook Live began in 2010, as a method of interviewing famous individuals in front of a select live audience and with the interview being streamed to the millions of Facebook users in the world. Facebook users can then discuss the videos in real time with other users and can ask questions, which can then be answered by the interviewee live on the show. This has been Facebook’s first foray into the world of live events discussion, and has so far seemed to be a success.

Facebook Live has been a feature in the US for a few years now, bringing an impressive list of guests to the show. The show has seen Barack Obama, Oprah Winfrey and Rihanna grace its presence, to name just a few. This demonstrates the potential power to draw in successful individuals across all disciplines – it has not just been limited to the music scene, but guests have also ranged from political figures to NASA astronauts. As these previous live shows have proved, Facebook shouldn’t have a problem getting celebrities and successful individuals to represent themselves on the show – with the potential to reach out to a billion people and increase their own audience engagement, there should be many stars willing to feature on the Facebook Live show in the future.

Jessie J commented on her involvement in the show: “Taking part in Facebook Live lets me connect with millions of fans all over the world that I wouldn’t otherwise get the chance to…I’m looking forward to answering their questions, and meeting the fans who actually get to come along and listen to me perform a song from my new album.” This shows the value that stars can get from engaging with audiences online and how it can allow them to be brought closer to their audience.

The two-way interaction that the show offers also allows fans themselves to engage with celebrities or public figures and ask questions, which they otherwise might not have been able to do. Facebook is hoping to generate more time spent on the site and a greater level of audience engagement through the creation of these live shows. This also appears to show a move to become more like Twitter, with more of a focus on real-time updates, with unfiltered comments feeding through as an immediate response to the show on the Facebook site. The exclusive content that Facebook Live offers to its audience, is part of its key selling point – when Jessie J featured on the first UK show on 26th September, she chose to perform an acoustic version one of her songs from her new album “Alive, in addition to the content which she provided through the interveiws.

Other popular music stars, such as Rihanna and Carly Rae Jepson have also featured on the show, however they were only there for interviews and not performances as Jessie J was. If Facebook chooses to show more performances on its Facebook Live shows will this threaten the re-launch of the social media entertainment site Myspace? Myspace's re-launch has specifically focused on the entertainment aspect of the site, but as Facebook continues to use music artists as a method of increasing audience engagement on the social network, it might start to provide competition for Myspace's music platform.  As 75% of the top 100 pages on Facebook are musicians, it is only natural that musicians use Facebook to connect to their fans. Facebook is increasingly trying to make celebrities make announcements on their site, such as Jay Z who released the new music video for his “Holy Grail” exclusively on Facebook a few months ago. This could be the start of a new move towards Facebook being used as a more interactive platform to unite fans and celebrities or public figures.

What do you think?

Do you think Facebook Live will become a regular show in the UK? 

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Introducing Facebook Live to the UK Reviewed by Anonymous on Wednesday, October 02, 2013 Rating: 5
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