The BBC is turning to Facebook to overcome uncertainties around its news service in Thailand, which was temporarily taken off-air alongside other international broadcasters after the country’s military staged a coup in May.
The organization is launching a “pop up” news operation that will dish up Thai, regional and international news in both English and Thai across the social network. The pilot will run for three months — it’s not clear if it will be replicated elsewhere in the world.
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The initiative has won praise from Britain’s Minister for Southeast Asia, and is certainly an interesting way to avoid the Thai junta’s clampdown on media. The army ordered a brief block of Facebook, but it remains to be seen if it would consider restricting access to this BBC project.
— Hugo Swire (@HugoSwire) July 9, 2014
Thailand has a population of 67 million and is estimated to have 28 million Facebook users, according to the social network’s own data.
Note: This article has been updated to reflect the fact that the BBC’s news service is no longer off-air in Thailand.
Thumbnail image via Nicolas Asfouri / AFP / Getty Images