Nearly 140 media outlets and celebrities are being paid by Facebook to use and promote their live video streaming service, Facebook Live, it has been revealed.
Out of the list of over a hundred outlets on Facebook’s payroll, seventeen of them have contracts worth over $1 million, with highest earning partners Buzzfeed, the New York Times, and CNN receiving around $9.3 million a year combined.
The full list of outlets involved in the partnership appear to be predominantly liberal and include the Huffington Post, Buzzfeed, Vox Media, CNN, the New York Times, Al Jazeera, NowThis Media, VICE, NPR, and Mashable, as well as numerous celebrities including television chef Gordon Ramsey, comedian Kevin Hart, Olympic swimmer Michael Phelps, and Seattle Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson.
Magazine publisher Hearst, Tastemade Inc, and Spanish soccer teams FC Barcelona and Real Madrid are also listed as part of the deal.
“We have an early beta program for a relatively small number partners that includes a broad range of content types from regions around the world,” said Facebook’s Global Operations VP Justin Osofsky in a statement. “We wanted to invite a broad set of partners so we could get feedback from a variety of different organization about what works and what doesn’t.”
Liberal blogging network Buzzfeed was the first outlet to partner with Facebook Live in April and are currently the highest paid partner on the list, bringing in over $3 million a year from the deal as one of Facebook’s new measures to increase user activity on the livestreaming service.
In order to compete with other mobile livestreaming services such as Twitter’s Periscope, Facebook Live has also introduced other features including a live animated “like” and “heart” display that borders on an identical copy of the same graphical feature Periscope has.
Facebook Live’s total partner contract cost currently comes to over $50 million, with many involved partners still to be released publicly.