Facebook says it's changing news feed to focus on friends, family

12 January, 2018, 06:12 | Author: Simon Thompson
  • Facebook testing local news section on its platform

Now, it seems those publishers are nearly as out of luck as the phony publishers Facebook has tried to scrub from the News Feed. A long-standing argument has been that it's Facebook's site, they can do what they want, which is totally true. One of the goals would be to encourage more conversation among Facebook users.

John Hegeman, vice president of product management for Facebook's news feed, shrugged off the business implications of people watching fewer videos. But Thursday's shift goes beyond previous changes by prioritizing posts that spur substantive interactions between people. Last month, Facebook released its own research demonstrating that when people connect with each other on social media, it has a positive effect.

The decision is based on community feedback that suggested too much brand and public content is being displayed, hindering interactive engagement across the site, Zuckerberg said.

Facebook is coming off of a tough year, where it had to battle fake news and reports that Russian-linked groups attempted to influence the 2016 presidential election via ads on its service.

"One of our big focus areas for 2018 is making sure the time we all spend on Facebook is time well spent", Zuckerberg wrote in a post on Thursday.

More news: Modi Government Failed To Provide Jobs, Tremendous Anger Against it in India

"Because space in News Feed is limited, showing more posts from friends and family and updates that spark conversation means we'll show less public content, including videos and other posts from publishers or businesses", the blog post read.

"This update is more about amplifying the things people value". So they said they wanted to improve the quality of the feed, which kind of does make sense, except when you consider they allow all sorts of advertising content into the newsfeed....if they are getting paid.

Facebook and other researchers have particularly homed in on passive content.

"As we roll this out, you'll see less public content like posts from businesses, brands, and media", he stated. Product managers are being asked to "facilitate the most meaningful interactions between people", rather than the previous mandate of helping people find the most meaningful content, he said. Facebook's algorithmic methods for pushing content have come under fire recently, so it's notable that the company is employing some human curators here.

"It's important to me that when Max and August grow up that they feel like what their father built was good for the world", Zuckerberg said.

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