Facebook ups its spending on streaming content, but cuts back on original programming

Maybe originality wasn’t the answer. Facebook is sinking more money into its streaming content, but it’s cutting back on original programming.

In details shared with The Information, Facebook said their budget for the Watch service will be $1.4 billion in 2020 (including the recent agreement with the PGA), but that original content was going to be a smaller part.

Didn’t realize Facebook produced shows? Apparently a lot of people didn’t. They recently canceled two of their shows, Limetown with Jessica Biel and Sorry for Your Loss starring Elizabeth Olsen.

When Facebook Watch launched in 2017, original content was supposed to be a main component, and they weren’t shy about planning to compete with Netflix and Amazon Prime. But instead, it looks like they’re shifting to licensed content, highlights and short clips.

Since long-form content that might make a user turn their attention away from their Facebook feed and take eyes away from the site’s advertising, it appears Facebook now prefers short content that puts users right back to where they left off.

Of course, Facebook hasn’t exactly confirmed this push, they’ve just canceled all their original shows, so it’s not hard to read what’s happened. We can expect some solid answers though in the coming weeks.