Meerkat was the pioneer. Twitter brought it to the forefront with Periscope. Could Facebook finally perfect live streaming? All signs point to them definitely trying, with the recent announcement and launch of “Live,” Facebook’s first entry into the increasingly popular mobile live streaming realm.
For months, Facebook has quietly been working on and perfecting their version of a live streaming platform, though I doubt as much time was spent into coming up with its moniker. Lack of creativity aside, Live is a mobile live streaming video application that’s a part of Facebook’s Mentions app. Here’s the catch: the feature is currently only available to public figures with a verified Facebook page.
As if celebrities and tabloid cover stars didn’t already have enough perks, now they are the sole proprietors of Facebook’s Live feature. These idolized figures can enter Live and broadcast live video to their millions of fans which is posted to their News Feed, and watch comments roll in at real-time on their broadcast stream of devotees proclaiming their desire to be impregnated by them. Unlike Meerkat, which keeps no record of live broadcasts through the app, and Periscope, which only saves live broadcasts for up to 24 hours, Facebook Live makes these streams permanently available for viewing after being broadcast live over the feature.
If that’s not incentive enough to get the sixth lead of your favorite TV show to use Live to connect with fans, Live bests Periscope and Meerkat because it’s inherently connected with a user’s already established Facebook page, allowing an instant window and access to the millions of fans that a public figure has already cultivated into a following on the platform. A built-in audience equals a much wider dispersal range of content and more eyeballs, something Meerkat and Periscope can’t exactly tout.
Facebook has taken its time to design Live as a feature that is best suited for users like celebrities, and is one that won’t annoy or alienate us peasants in an already oversaturated world bombarded with too many notifications to keep track of. Broadcasts on Live will quickly appear in the feed of any subscriber to the users page, and Facebook will only send push notifications about a broadcast on Live to those who have recently interacted with something on a celebrity’s page, a far better solution to reach those who are most interested instead of turning off those who may not remember they liked a certain page eons ago. If you’re listening, Periscope, follow suit!
Celebrities worried about the onslaught of haters hating and sending an influx of negative comments during their live broadcast can breathe a sigh of relief – Live will ensure that it illustrates comments at a steady pace as not to overwhelm the broadcaster, and has an algorithm that sifts through vulgar comments and hides them from being seen. Broadcasters can also add phrases and words to their page’s moderation blacklist to skirt anything they don’t want to see or talk about.
Once a celebrity’s
shameless promotional cycle vapid, ego boosting session Live broadcast ends, the News Feed story and video will remain on a celebrity’s page if they’re so inclined to bestow the magic upon those who weren’t in the know enough to witness the marvel live. As for when us mere mortals might get the chance to use Live, product manager Vadim Lavruski remains coyly tight-lipped on the subject, offering only so much as a vague promise that the product will evolve and revamp as feedback floods in from viewers and the only people who can use it and actually matter: celebrities.
Early adopters include Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson, perennial Disney star Ashley Tisdale and “Arrow” star Stephen Amell, who you can watch testing out the new feature below.
Testing, testing… 1, 2… FACEBOOK!
Posted by Stephen Amell on Wednesday, August 5, 2015