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Facebook to revamp its News Feed to show more posts from friends and family

Facebook will prioritize 'meaningful social interactions' over 'relevant content' on its News Feed in the coming weeks 

12 January 2018, 9:54am
Facebook is to change how its news feed works, making posts from businesses, brands and media less prominent.

Mark Zuckerberg announced the major overhaul of Facebook’s News Feed algorithm that would prioritize “meaningful social interactions” over “relevant content” on Thursday, one week after he pledged to spend 2018 “making sure that time spend on Facebook is time well spent”.

Organisations on Facebook may see the popularity of their posts decrease as a result, the firm acknowledged.

The changes will take effect over the coming weeks.

 “The balance of what’s in News Feed has shifted away from the most important thing Facebook can do – help us connect with each other,” Zuckerberg wrote in a Facebook post announcing the change.

 

“We feel a responsibility to make sure our services aren’t just fun to use, but also good for people’s well-being.”

If public content is to be promoted, it will now have to be seen to encourage community interaction - as happens within the tight-knit groups that discuss TV programmes and sports, he said.

“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,” Adam Mosseri, Facebook’s Head of News Feed, wrote in a blog post announcing the changes.

Facebook relies heavily on engagement to sort content on its News Feed. Posts that received a lot of reactions, comments, or shares were bumped up, as Facebook identified which posts were popular in users networks.

In his post, Zuckerberg said “video and other public content have exploded on Facebook in the past couple of years”, to the extent that some feel it is “crowding out” updates from friends and family.

and some public content will still appear in users’ feeds.

Zuckerberg wrote that the changes will likely result in people spending less time on Facebook, a change that may have negative impacts on the company’s bottom line.

“If we do the right thing, I believe that will be good for our community and our business over the long term too,” he wrote.

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