Facebook again changed algorithm users news feed
In the social network Facebook again changed the algorithm for the formation of the user’s news feed. Earlier this year it was decided to give priority to publications from relatives and friends. Then, as part of the fight against fakes, news from proven sources gained the upper hand. And the founder of the social network Mark Zuckerberg announced another innovation: in the first place in the tape will appear regional news, news from local sources.
According to Zuckerberg, the new algorithm is not his initiative, but the response to user requests.
“People constantly tell us they want to see more local news on Facebook. Local news helps us understand the issues that are important for our communities and affect our lives. Studies show that reading local news directly correlates with civil involvement. People who know what’s going on around are more likely to help change the situation, “says Facebook’s founder.
The new policy will first be tested on US users, but it is planned to expand coverage over the course of the year. Recall, according to the internal statistics of Facebook, the number of Ukrainian social network users has reached 11 million.
What has Facebook announced?
The company is altering the algorithm that runs the news feed, which displays a computer-curated selection of posts from other users and Facebook pages. No longer will it prioritise “helping you find relevant content”, says the site’s founder, Mark Zuckerberg. The new goal is to help you “have more meaningful interactions”.
What will change?
Today, most people’s news feeds are dominated by professionally made content from brands, businesses and the news media. Zuckerberg says Facebook wants to change that balance, so your feed will instead be dominated by posts from friends and family, as well as Facebook groups you are a member of.
The change is not yet in effect, so it is hard to know how different this approach will be. At its most extreme, it could be similar to the “experiment” Facebook ran in six smaller countries, where it removed wholesale any post from professional publishers and put them in a second feed, the “explore” feed.
But if Facebook wants to take a light-touch approach, the effect could be more like other tweaks to the news feed algorithm, which subtly alter the balance of content, changing the types of posts which have the most success but not removing them entirely.
Why is it doing this?
Zuckerberg says Facebook has studied academic research and concluded that social media is only good for users’ wellbeing if they use it to “connect with people we care about”. In November, the company published a post that claimed “passive” social media use could be harmful, arguing instead for a more active and communal approach to the site.
As a result, Zuckerberg says, Facebook wants to promote the sorts of posts that encourage those interactions, while demoting those its data shows encourage only surface interactions – likes and shares but little else.
The change will bring Facebook other benefits. By diminishing the influence of news media, it may be able to avoid a repeat of the bad press it received during the 2016 US election when it became a breeding ground for “fake news”, helping spread stories that misled millions.
And the company has long displayed concern over the decline in “organic sharing” – users posting content about their own lives, rather than simply sharing links to the wider web or professionally produced videos and photos. Users are more likely to share details about their own lives if they see others doing the same, and so promoting organic content begets more organic content.
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