Facebook has tapped former NBC and CNN anchor Campbell Brown to help strengthen the company’s ties with media outlets.
Brown will be the social network’s head of news partnerships starting this month, according to a post on her Facebook page Friday. The position is a new one that Facebook created in the wake of sharp criticism it faced for its role in spreading fake news stories during the U.S. presidential election.
“This is a different role for me, but one where I will be tapping my newsroom experience to help news organisations and journalists work more closely and more effectively with Facebook,” Brown said in her Facebook post. “I will be working directly with our partners to help them understand how Facebook can expand the reach of their journalism, and contribute value to their businesses.”
Facebook told The New York Times on Friday that Brown won’t have editorial control over content that is shared on its network. The company’s job description for the role said that Brown will be its “leading representative with news organisations worldwide” and “clearly communicate and foster transparent dialogue with news organisations globally.”
Brown was an anchor on NBC’s Weekend Today from 2003 to 2007 before she hosted her own prime-time series on CNN from 2008 to 2010. She most recently cofounded The 74, a “non-profit, non-partisan news site covering education in America.”
Mark Zuckerberg and other Facebook executives have repeatedly pushed back on the idea that they have editorial and ethical responsibility for the glut of low-quality, fake news stories that go viral across their social network. Facebook recently partnered with third-party fact checkers like Snopes to weed out fake and misleading news stories, a decision that immediately raised concerns from conservatives.
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