Facebook Goes Global with YouTube Rival

Facebook Goes Global with YouTube Rival
Facebook's Watch service has made little impact in the U.S., but may fair better in overseas markets.

(CCM) — Facebook has finally taken the shackles off its U.S.-only video streaming service and made it available to users around the world.

The Watch service was launched just over a year ago in Facebook's domestic market, and only a select group of content publishers were allowed to run advertisements during commercial breaks in their programming.

But now all content creators will be allowed to have advertising breaks as long as they hit certain metrics, according to a BBC report. These include creating videos that last longer than three minutes, attracting more than 30,000 viewers over the past two months who watched at least one minute of video, and having more than 10,000 followers.

Initially this will be restricted to audiences based in the U.S., U.K., Ireland, Australia, and New Zealand, with Facebook taking a 45% cut of any advertising revenue generated.

The Watch service has had limited impact in the U.S., with 50% of Facebook users saying that they had never heard of it, while a further 24% said that although they were aware of it they had never used it, according to a survey carried out by Diffusion Group. Less than 15% of Facebook users said that they had used the service at least once a week.

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