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Sorry, Facebook, people around the world think you’re a media company now

Sorry, Facebook, people around the world think you’re a media company now
[Photo: Slava Bowman /Unsplash]

Even though Facebook controls the flow of information to more than 2 billion people, CEO Mark Zuckerberg has long resisted the idea that his vast social network is a media company. Most recently, he doubled down on his anti-media notion by promising to reduce the news-feed reach of public posts in favor of those posted by family and friends. But in terms of public perception, Facebook may be fighting a losing battle, as almost half of news consumers don’t seem to be making the distinction between social media and traditional media anymore.

That’s according to the 18th annual “Trust Barometer” survey from Edelman, which asked consumers in 28 countries what they assumed was meant by the term “media” in general. Of the respondents, 48% said they included social platforms in that definition, while 25% said they considered search platforms media. That’s still lower than the 89% who said they assumed “media” meant journalists, but it indicates that the traditional definitions are becoming blurrier—and more complicated.

You can check out the full 2018 Trust Barometer here.

[Courtesy of Edelman]
Correction: An earlier version of this story misidentified the CEO of Edelman and misattributed a quote that has since been removed. We regret the error.

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