Former CNN reporter, anchor and host Campbell Brown is joining Facebook Inc to lead its news partnerships team, an appointment aimed at repairing the online social media company’s troubled relationship with the traditional media.
Brown announced the move in a post on her Facebook page on Friday.
Facebook has come under scrutiny for its role in disseminating what became known as ‘fake news’ during last year’s U.S. presidential election, which had a negative effect on the businesses of more legitimate media companies.
In her new job, Brown will lead Facebook’s news partnerships unit, which works with media outlets which publish content on Facebook.
The company faced criticism following the election of U.S. Republican Donald Trump for not doing enough to stop misinformation and baseless news reports being circulated by users.
With a growing number of readers getting information from social media rather than traditional media companies’ own web pages, Facebook is getting more attention for what it puts in users’ feeds.
In recent months, Facebook has taken steps to combat misinformation, working with the Associated Press, PolitiFact and website Snopes to fact-check articles that appear in users’ news feeds.
Campbell, with 15 years of experience at Time Warner Inc’s CNN and Comcast Corp’s NBC News unit, will be tasked with helping news organizations and reporters work more closely and more effectively with Facebook.
Brown founded nonprofit, education-focused news site The 74 in 2015. She said she will step back from her editorial role there but remain on the board in a note on the company’s site on Friday.
Facebook executives told the New York Times on Friday that Brown’s role would not be a de facto editor-in-chief, as she will not be involved in any content decisions – but more of a liaison to media companies. When asked to elaborate, a Facebook spokeswoman referred to Campbell’s 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,” wrote Campbell. (Reporting by Tim Baysinger; Editing by Bill Rigby)