Facebook is more than just a social media source. The site has diverged into multiple sectors and as of late, has become one of the world’s top news sources. We know that Facebook is popular here in the states, but numbers may differ over in Europe.
Back in 2016, we looked at the top French and Irish sites on Facebook. Many of these sites are household names in their home countries, and seemed to be furthering their brand as they transitioned their focus from TV sets and newsstands to social media feeds. Let’s see how the sites that are still using Facebook as a channel have fared in the last six years.
According to Reuter’s 2021 Digital Report, 39% of French Facebook users use the social media site as a news source. We looked at the same sites to see how they fared against time.
In 2016, L’Equipe and Le Monde saw themselves sitting pretty at the top. L’Equipe wrote topical sports coverage that stayed popular year-round, while Le Monde relied on broader editorial and opinion pieces. Now, the two find themselves demoted. In January of 2022, L’Equipe had 2.28M total interactions while Le Monde found themselves in last place with 1.06M. Now this isn’t to say these numbers aren’t large, just that times have changed and these sites’ popularity has waned.
This January, Le Parisien and Demotivateur topped the charts. Le Parisien had 3.45M total interactions, becoming the number one source for general news on Facebook in France. Their top post of the month highlighted an 11 year old who cares about pollution. Demotivateur brands themselves as a viral news site for millennials, generating 3.07M interactions. Back in 2016 their team only had 11 members, so they have obviously grown quite quickly to move up on the charts.
Ireland has 5% less of their Facebook users using the site as a news source compared to France. Their engagement numbers also reflect the smaller market (total population: 4.995 million).
Similar to 2016, Independent.ie, the online branch of the INM newspaper group, takes the lead in news feeds with 433K interactions over the month of January. Following in second was, once again, the Irish Times. Unlike Independent.ie, which is a free-to-read site, the Times operates a paywall, which allows ten free reads per week. However, click-throughs from social media are not included in the weekly total. Satirical site Waterford Whispers News has moved up on the charts with 201.4k interactions, proving that humor always has deserved a spot on the charts.
The rest of the sites stayed in similar positions to that of six years ago, showing a unique loyalty in the Irish news following. Then again, The Independent and Irish Times are reliable sources that offer a broad view of information, so their consistency at the top of the chart isn’t surprising.
A loyalty like no other, France and Ireland’s news site likes have stayed the same since six years ago. A testament to both the publishers’ postings as well as Facebook’s news influence, these sites have withstood the test of time and will continue to fare well in the social media sphere for a long time.